From the Sidelines: Afternoon Practice

Lane Adkins provides details about the Browns Tuesday afternoon practice session. Included are notes about the team's new defensive backs, and details on some of the battles down the depth chart.

* CB Eric Wright was outstanding in 11-on-11 drills. He knocked down two passes and was on the hip of the receivers throughout the session.

* Age means nothing when it comes to CB Terry Cousin. While the veteran cornerback may not have the top-end speed to cover on the outside consistently, he has been very good in the slot and re-routes receivers off the ball.

* Undrafted free agent DB Mil'von James was beaten on a perfectly placed 30-yard pass from Brady Quinn to Travis Wilson. Beaten may be too strong a description, actually - James was in great position, but the pass and reception were simply picture-perfect.

* More from Travis Wilson: The third-year WR is showing greater consistency in route-running and has been solid catching the ball with his hands. Last year, Wilson did not use his hands nearly as well, off the line or when hauling in a pass.

* Undrafted free agent CB Darnell Terrell is showing some signs of struggling. He has been increasingly inconsistent jamming a receiver at the line, as his hands and initial footwork have been somewhat slow.

* Undrafted rookie WR Nate Hughes has been solid and has caught the eye of the staff. Hughes has been smooth in individual drills, runs effortlessly and catches the ball. This rookie is very smooth and a player who may surprise heading into training camp.

* Veteran WR Kevin Kasper has been good throughout the OTA sessions, but struggled a bit in individual drills, causing receivers coach Wes Chandler to bark "Get your head around", in a receiving drill.

* Backup RT Isaac Sowells has held his own and is benefiting from the increased practice reps he is receiving. In all, Sowells has been a pleasant surprise, but has had difficulty handling the speed and quickness of OLB Antwan Peek coming off the edge.

* Tight-end Kellen Winslow is participating in many drills and looks very good in receiving drills, except for an errant toss in a drill which nearly took his head off. Overall, Winslow does not show ill-effects from off-season knee surgery or being away from the team during his rehab.

* A major difference from 2007 in the OTA's and mini-camp has been the efficiency of the team as a whole. Players in the scheme last season have picked up where they left off and are poised to improve heading into training camp. The majority of the communication errors and issues caused by inadequate knowledge of the playbook seem to be in the past.

* While viewing players in shorts in no-contact drills can only tell so much of the story, it's worth noting that the overall quickness of the linebackers and receivers appears improved, as does the strength and agility along the defensive line.


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