Some of the latest we're being told from inside Fortress Berea, this mostly concerning the team's approach on defense:
BRAINSTORM: Get ready to see players challenged intellectually early and often. Looking to improve their consistency against different offenses, every indication is Ryan will mix-up the defensive calls on the fly, pressuring players to learn the system and responsibilities early in the training camp process. Players who can't keep up will be at risk.
PRESSURE TIME: Getting pressure on the QB has been deemed a necessity -- and this defensive coaching staff is working on ways to re-ignite the team's attack on QBs, despite not investing huge dollars or high draft picks on an OLB speed rusher. Early information leads theOBR to believe that Ryan will incorporate a large number of different looks to force the opposing offense to adjust. Vanilla will not be the defensive flavor in 2009
GETTING A CHANCE: From talking to those in the know, the consensus I get on Rob Ryan is that he's considered an excellent defensive mind, despite not running a league-dominating defense in Oakland. Insiders tell us that Ryan played good soldier while a member of the Oakland Raiders staff and was not permitted to run the defense he would have liked. Ryan seeks to create what could be called "controlled chaos" in order to create pressure and opportunities. The style is very similar to his brother Rex, who took more freedom and better players to a promotion to Jets head coach from Ravens defensive coordinator.
PLAYERS IN PLAY: A key element of that hoped-for passing attack, strongside OLB, is very much in play. David Bowens and Alex Hall will battle for the starting job, while rookie David Veikune figures to see action inside and outside. DE Kenyon Coleman and NT Shaun Rogers are basically shoo-ins to start along the defensive line. Kamerion Wimbley, D'Qwell Jackson and Eric Barton are pretty well set at the other linebacker spots. Eric Wright and Brandon McDonald are the early starters at CB, with Rod Hood, Corey Ivy as the nickel and dime backs.
A LITTLE RUSH: The Browns plan on watching developments at the RB position during training camp. While veteran Jamal Lewis is the incumbent, we are hearing the HC needs to see Lewis on the field to relax potential reservations whether the player can remain effective. Lewis is the de facto starter, but still needs to prove it on the practice field.
NO ROBO: Potentially the team's most important wide receiver outside of Braylon Edwards, Brian Robiskie has yet to indulge in significant contract discussions. Robiskie remains on the outside looking in.