Coach Rob Chudzinski and his coaching staff will get their first on-field look at rookies the team drafted or signed as free agents when the Cleveland Browns host their annual rookie minicamp at the team’s Berea training facility this weekend.
During the three-day camp, players will participate in walk-throughs on Friday and Saturday mornings before practicing in the afternoons and meeting with coaches following the on-field work. On Sunday, the Browns will meet and practice in the morning.
“Getting these guys here really gives you a chance to really get a first-hand look at them,” Chudzinski said on “Cleveland Browns Daily, Driven By Liberty Ford.” “You’re looking for guys that have some potential for the future. You’re looking for guys that can help you, especially on special teams, and get a sense for where they’re at.
“For them, (it’s) learning and getting a chance to be around the coaches and learn the system going back to how it was for the veteran guys when we came in as a coaching staff, getting these guys to start learning what we expect, how we practice, and getting a feel for their coaches.”
Chudzinski said the players will get a feel for how to practice at NFL speed and also without pads, something they did not have at the collegiate level. During their transition from college to professional football, Chudzinski said there is “an assessment standpoint and a teaching standpoint.”
“You want to see how guys pick things up and how they learn, and that’s beneficial for them, the guys that are going to be here, to start learning that and going through that process,” Chudzinski said. “We have a lot of guys, a number of guys that are here as tryouts. We’ll get a chance to look at them, see how they pick things up and see what they look like, run around and look at their athletic ability and what kind of players you feel like you think they can be.
“There’s always guys who surprises you or shows something that you didn’t see or didn’t expect. It always happens, and the thing you have to guard against and be careful against is we’re still not in pads. We’re in shorts and helmets. I can’t tell you how many times guys look great in shorts and helmets and you put the pads on, and they’re completely different, or vice versa.”
Chudzinski and the Browns brought in nine wide receivers and offensive linemen in the rookie free-agent period and are two-deep at most positions.
“You want to have the numbers for training camp and get ready to have those numbers for training camp,” Chudzinski said. “We have an idea at each position of how many guys we need for training camp to go through the course of practice and preseason games. We wanted to get those numbers close to those target numbers, and those were the areas where we needed more people.”