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Chudzinski stresses importance of versatility

Posted May 23, 2013

Cleveland Browns coach Rob Chudzinski knows versatility is an ability that will be of great importance to his players and the team.

Cleveland Browns coach Rob Chudzinski understands the importance of having versatile players on the field at all times, and during organized team activities over the past two weeks, he has made it a point to test players in different spots.

Defensively, Chudzinski has interchanged outside linebackers Paul Kruger and Jabaal Sheard, as well as defensive back Johnson Bademosi.

“We’re working them a little bit on both sides, and we’re doing that with a lot of players out here,” Chudzinski said of Sheard and Kruger. “We’re working them on multiple sides. It gives us a chance to work them there in case you need to down the road.

“Where they’ve been playing, and how they’ve been playing, they’ve looked pretty good to me.”

In addition to his defensive responsibilities during his rookie season, Bademosi, who switched from cornerback to safety this year, led the Browns in special-teams tackles. Chudzinski sees him as an emerging leader in the coverage and returns units.

“I’ve been pleased with him, and he’s taken that kind of role, special teams-wise,” Chudzinski said. “He’s learning a new position, playing some safety. He looks pretty good at safety right now. We’ll keep playing him there, and we’ll also give him some work at corner and see how that goes.”

Offensively, the Browns have rotated their guards, including five-year NFL veteran John Greco, who started 10 games at left guard last season when second-year professional Jason Pinkston was lost for the year due to blood clots.

Prior to coming to Cleveland, Greco had experience playing both tackle and guard for the St. Louis Rams, who drafted him from the University of Toledo.

“John’s able to play a lot of different positions,” Chudzinski said. “He came in last year and did a really nice job. He’s smart; he can handle a lot of different things, and we’ve been working him on both sides. He’s a valuable guy.”

Chudzinski and the Browns have also looked to the running back position for versatility and depth. The Browns have added Brandon Jackson, Miguel Maysonet, and Dion Lewis to a core of rushers already featuring Trent Richardson, Montario Hardesty, and Chris Ogbonnaya.

“I’ve always felt you can’t have enough good running backs,” Chudzinski said of signing Jackson earlier this week. “He’s a proven guy and he’s had good production. Just bringing in another guy at that position, it’s been my experience that you never have enough good running backs.

“Dion’s done a nice job. He’s had a couple nice runs out here, showed some quickness, can catch the ball and has some skills. I like what I’ve seen.”

SITUATIONAL WORK

After going over first and second-down install during the first three OTA practices, Chudzinski and the Browns focused on situational work during their three sessions this week.

“We’ve had a good week,” Chudzinski said. “I’m pleased with what we’ve gotten done this week. This week, we got more into red zone and two-minute situations. We worked that, really, all week long with the red zone, a lot of work the last two days, and we worked in the two-minute situations.

“I feel good about the progress we’re making. We’re covering a lot. The energy’s been great, and we’re making our way.”

INJURY UPDATES

The Browns conducted Thursday’s OTA practice without running back Trent Richardson or tight end Jordan Cameron. Richardson is battling an injured shin and Cameron suffered a groin pull.

“It’s precautionary; we’re holding him out,” Chudzinski said of Richardson. “We’ve got minicamp in a week-and-a-half. He may miss that. I’m not sure. We’ll just take it day-by-day.

“(Jordan) has a groin that he pulled, and we’re being cautionary with these types of things. We’ll have to wait and see.”

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