Offensive Offense the Theme of the Day

Mangini turns into a track coach as the 'O' gets put through the paces again... and again... and...

They held a football practice in Berea on Sunday and a cross country meet broke out.

The Browns offense, which had played well on Saturday when training camp opened with two practices and then did so again in the early stages on Sunday, began struggling and struggling and struggling.

And struggling some more.

False starts.

Fumbled exchanges between the center and quarterback.

Missed connections on passing attempts.

Over and over and over.

Finally, head coach Eric Mangini had had enough. Mangini, who makes players run a lap around the field when they err in practice, ordered the entire offense to do one. That included every player, even those who weren't in the game then and/or had nothing to do with any of the problems.

All for one, and one for all. Mangini is trying to develop the team concept, so everybody had to take the punishment.

The only thing that was missing was a timer, as you find in a cross country meet, shouting out times as the runners passed him.

"They should have run a lap," laughed inside linebacker D'Qwell Jackson, in full earshot of left guard Eric Steinbach, who was standing nearby, waiting to be interviewed.

Said Steinbach, "Yeah, that got pretty sloppy. The ball was on the ground a lot. Practice started off pretty well, but then things began to slip."

Former NFL coaching great Buddy Ryan, in town to watch his son, Rob, the first-year Browns defensive coordinator, said that while he didn't make players run when he was coaching in the league – "We did ups and downs (push-ups)," he recalled – he thinks making them do laps is a good idea in that it really gets their attention.

The only people who didn't like it were the members of the grounds crew, since the area around the fields is getting worn down fast.

HAPPY CAMPER: In two days under Mangini, the Browns have already done more tackling drills than they did in four seasons combined under head coach Romeo Crennel, who avoided such things because he feared the players would get injured. As it turned out, they got injured anyway. Jackson is thrilled the Browns are getting physical. "Maybe I'll be saying something different in a couple of weeks, but I like it now," he said. "I look forward to it." Asked if he thought the work might be too physical and radical, Jackson said, "I've not won since I've been in the league. He won in New York and he won three Super Bowls when he was in New England. So who am I to question what he's doing."

HAPPY CAMPER II: Jackson is also excited about what the defense can do under Rob Ryan. "He's a player-friendly coach," Jackson said. "There are guys moving around everywhere. Without giving anything away, I'll just say that this will be a fun defense." Ryan is a big fan of Jackson. "He's talked good about me," he said. "Now I have to go out and prove it."

LEFT, BUT NOT LEFT OUT: In addition to his work at guard, Steinbach is getting some snaps at left tackle as a possible backup to two-time Pro Bowler Joe Thomas. At 6-foot-6 and a listed 295 pounds, his build is much more that of a left tackle than a squatty, hulking guard. But as Steinbach pointed out, "Everybody on the line is being moved around to various spots."

MORE IS LESS: In 2006 with Detroit, first-year Browns wide receiver Mike Furrey had a career season, catching 98 passes for 1,086 yards and six touchdowns. "I was catching passes all over the field," Furrey said. Must have been great, huh? Well, uh, no, it wasn't, as a matter of fact. "It was pretty sweet individually, but it's not something I'll remember because the team was not successful. We were 3-13," he said.

MORE IS MORE: At 32, Furrey is one of the elder statesmen on a receiving corps that's pretty young overall. But don't call him old. "Never say old," Furrey said. "I have the knowledge that comes with being a veteran, but I'm still improving."

THE HEART OF IT ALL: Furrey, who was born in Galion and graduated from Hilliard High School in suburban Columbus, is one of four Ohioans on the roster. The others are three rookies -- fellow wide receiver Brian Robiskie from Chagrin Falls (Chagrin Falls High), offensive lineman Brandon Braxton from Youngstown (Ursuline) and defensive lineman Adam Hoppel from Lisbon (Beaver Local).

BOND, TIGHT BOND: Mohammed Massaquoi indicated he and Robiskie are joined at the hip. And with good reason, since both are rookie wideouts who were taken in the second round of the NFL Draft and are competing neck-and-neck for the No. 2 wide receiver spot opposite Braylon Edwards. "We're close," Massaquoi said. "We hang out a lot. We talk a lot. We try to help each other out because we're going through the same things." He likes going against Robiskie every day in practice, saying, "The competition makes everybody better."

UP NEXT: The Browns practice twice on Monday, from 8:45 to 10:45 a.m. and 5:45 to 7:45 p.m. The sessions are free and open to the public.

QUOTABLE: "He wasn't out there today, but I watched (No.) 92 on film and I thought I was watching Reggie White," Buddy Ryan with high praise for Browns nose tackle Shaun Rogers, who sat out practice with an undisclosed injury. Ryan was head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles when the late, great White, a Pro Football Hall of Famer, was playing for them.


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