The mini-camps are over, but the questions keep coming in via my OBR Forum in-box and email. Even if the team is on vacation, the OBR and Browns fans keep talking Browns...
LA: Not in the slightest. Harrison is a hard-working running back who needs an opportunity. He is never going to be a world-beater in the blocking scheme, but is picking up the responsibilities of his role in the backfield. Going from being "the guy" in college to "just a guy" at this level did take some time for this talented running back. He is working on his special teams play as well.
In watching the tape on this young man, you can see that he has very good vision and ability to read blocks and follow pads low. While not physically imposing, Harrison does not go down easily and often gains yardage after contact. Couple this with his improving ball handling and receiving ability, Harrison could be a factor at some point, especially if there is injury issue at the position.
While I like what I see from Austin Scott, the young man is not ready for prime time. He is a solid downhill/power back. Scott is doing a better job of getting pads low, displays some adequate quickness, but he is very carefree handling the ball. Nothing could be better for this player and the Browns if he can be on the practice squad roster in 2008.
Quite often a team such as the Browns will bring players in to get a read on them for future reference. Teams seek an edge through their player evaluation process like never before. As long as the Browns are under the front office direction of Phil Savage, there will never be too much information. Savage and his staff are tremendous at breaking down and evaluating these young players.
LA: Kasper has done well in the non-contact OTA setting and has taken advantage of a couple players being out. Let's remember a couple things though: Kasper has made the rounds in this league for whatever reason, he is actually taller than Donte' Stallworth, and has some quickness. While he may have some value, let's see what transpires when the pads go on... I do not see him as a Welker type.
Q: The signing of wide receiver Donte Stallworth looks like a solid move by the team. What role do you really see him filling and will he be a productive piece on the offensive side of the ball?
LA: We all hear that he provides that deep-ball presence that will take some heat off Braylon Edwards, which in theory he should. What I am most interested in seeing from Stallworth is his ability with match-ups in the shorter game, where he has the speed and quickness to be a productive player. In breaking this team down on film from a season ago, this is an area of weakness and Stallworth could be a very interesting and important piece of the overall puzzle.
Q: All reports lead us to believe that Brady Quinn has looked superior in comparison to Derek Anderson in the practice sessions. If so, how can they keep Anderson as the starter when the talented second year player is breathing down his neck?
LA: I wouldn't say viewing these non-contact practice sessions is a true barometer for evaluation of the QB position or those taking the snaps. At times Anderson looked better, on other occasions Quinn looked the sharper of the two.
Derek Anderson has been inconsistent in practice sessions, but it's nothing we haven't viewed since a year ago. Until this QB stops relying on his arm strength to provide a balance to his game and gains the intangibles to be more of a complete QB, his issues are not going to completel fade away.
Anderson is the quintessential streaky QB: when he gets hot, he is lights out. At some point, Anderson is going to get you. The issue is Anderson does make some questionable decisions and does not throw the short ball well.
That being said, this is Derek Anderson's job to lose. He deserves the opportunity and the locker room believes in his ability. This is not to say there is not a respect and belief in Quinn, as there is significant belief he is going to be a very good QB.
Crennel and the organization are going to give the starter every opportunity to solidify his place, it will be up to Anderson to keep his job. I do not see the team making any type of radical decision during camp, unless Anderson is injured or simply terrible.
As for Quinn, I anticipate he will have a good camp and keep the pressure on, which will help both players and this team in the long-run.