What We've Been Told

The site that broke the Josh Cribbs contract story months ago brings the latest real scoop on a story that isn't over yet. Plus: Will all rookies signing before 8/1? What about the Tucker rumor? Which TE will emerge?

- While the perception is the Browns are having a difficult time getting the rookies under contract, the organization itself is of the belief the negotiations are going quite well and in a timely manner. Despite the rookies being slated to report on July 24th, the organization remains steadfast in the belief each unsigned player will be in camp soon, prior to the official start of roster-wide training camp.

- With the Browns first round draft selection in the 2009 draft agreeing to terms, the organization has set its sights on getting all three of their second-round draft selections to sign on the dotted line. In addition to Veikune signing late last night, progress has been made in discussions with the representatives for wide receiver Mohamed Massaquoi. While Massaquoi isn't immediately ready to report to camp, the progress nonetheless is notable.

- The same cannot be stated regarding the status of rookie wide receiver Brian Robiskie. As first noted by the OBR's JohnTaylor, Robiskie is not going to be pressured into signing a deal to get the player into camp. Negotiations between the Browns and Robiskie's representatives has been an extremely slow process, with limited conversation and reason for optimism.

- Despite the positive notes coming from the Browns organization in recent weeks regarding Josh Cribbs the player, the organization remains uncommitted to reworking the three-years remaining on the player's contract. Cribbs' contract has been discussed internally within the organization and the Browns have spoken to the agent for the player, with little resolution. Despite the contract issue, Cribbs has been a loyal soldier for the organization, speaking and attending numerous functions in the community representing the Cleveland Browns. While a holdout from training camp could be forthcoming, it is unlikely the player will sit out unless a lack of progress in upcoming talks is perceived by Cribbs as disrespectful.

- Recently some scuttle made its rounds regarding the future of veteran offensive lineman Ryan Tucker. According to speculation, Tucker is planning on retiring prior to the start of training camp, slated for August 1st. Numerous Browns players were surprised to hear the veteran 'could' be planning to call it quits -- according to rumors.

- As the rookies and others required to be in Berea, Ohio for the start of training camp for the rookie players, the OBR has learned numerous veteran players have been in and out of the facility in recent weeks preparing for the 2009 season.

- One of the more impressive players this off-season has been second-year TE Martin Rucker, who has been taking advantage of the opportunity to work with the new coaching staff. Rucker has been physically solid and has displayed the ability to grasp the new offensive scheme. Gaining additional reps in off-season sessions due to the limited activity of veteran Steve Heiden, Rucker looks to make up for a rookie season which was derailed by knee surgery and playing behind the likes of the departed Kellen Winslow, Darnell Dinkins and Heiden. In an offense where two TE sets are going to be common, the pass-catching Rucker has the opportunity to be a threat in the passing game due to his size and quickness.


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