When second-year safety
After playing with a 4-3 scheme in front of him last year, Gipson likes the aggressiveness within the team’s new 3-4 defensive alignment.
“I love it,” Gipson said during an appearance on “Cleveland Browns Daily, Driven by Liberty Ford.” “You’re able to go out there and play fast football. That’s the name of the game. You can go out there and play aggressive, play fast, play relentless, and that’s our motto. That’s what we do and we’re going to continue to build on that. This new defense, Coach Horton brought his aggressive style of play over here and all of us adapted to it. We love it, and are out there just having fun, 11 guys to the football.
“We definitely want to get every little thing ironed out, attention-to-detail on everything, so that when June’s minicamp hits, we’re in full swing. It’s full-go, little to no mental errors. We pretty much want to make sure that we have it ironed out, have the whole defense installed, and just go from there. When you think about it, as soon as June hits, a month later, it’s training camp, and that’s when real football begins. That’s definitely our mindset, and as a defense, I feel we have the guys capable of accomplishing that.”
Gipson said he reported to the Browns’ facility on April 1 with the desire to strengthen his mind and body, while “getting bigger, stronger, faster” in order to compete for playing time in the secondary.
“I’m definitely blessed to be in this situation and thank the Browns for that,” Gipson said. “I’m going to go out and compete. I feel like my skill set is ready, and I know nothing’s going to be given to me. There’s a lot of guys in here that have to earn their stripes, and I’m one of them. I still have to prove myself, but I’m definitely ready to do that. All I can do is leave it on the field, every OTA practice, every weight rep, and training camp.”
Gipson was signed by the Browns as a rookie free agent from the University of Wyoming on May 9, 2012. After making the team out of training camp and battling through a knee injury that cost him five games, Gipson emerged as the Browns’ starting free safety in the team’s 20-14 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Nov. 25.
Gipson made two more starts over the season’s final five weeks and finished the year with 29 total tackles and one interception.
“It’s definitely fueled my fire,” Gipson said of being an undrafted free agent. “Coming out of college, every guy wants to be drafted. Every guy has that mindset. For you to go undrafted, you know the road is going to be a lot harder than say, your average second, third, fourth, fifth-round draft pick. It fuels you to let the naysayers know they were wrong. I can’t say that doesn’t still bother me, but at the end of the day, I’ve been blessed and fortunate to make it thus far, and hopefully, I continue to make strides.
“I feel like I’ve grown leaps and bounds, from a mental and physical standpoint. These grown men out there are fast, strong and physical. Once your body adapts to the game, and mentally, you prepare and you’re ready and you kind of know what to expect, it’s definitely encouraging for a young player coming up.”