Little driven to improve skills

Posted Jul 26, 2013

BEREA, Ohio -- Cleveland Browns wide receiver Greg Little is focused on improving his skills and pushing his teammates to get better with each training-camp practice.

BEREA, Ohio -- Practice has ended for most of the players at the Cleveland Browns' training camp.

They are visiting with family members, signing autographs or rushing to the locker room to change and get to the cafeteria to have dinner before the next team meeting.

But for wide receiver Greg Little, there is still work to be done. He is standing in front of a JUGS machine as it repeatedly launches footballs for him to catch.

Despite leading the Browns in receptions, and totaling 114 catches for 1,356 yards and six touchdowns over the last two years, Little is driven to improve himself while also pushing those around him to get better.

“I just don’t want to leave any opportunity for me to get better,” Little said. “I just feel like I’ve got to take advantage of every, single day and the time that I have in the building and away from the building to get better. I think a lot of speculation is on the receivers to do better, and I’m just taking it on myself to push my fellow receivers just to get better too.

“Oftentimes, the bigger plays come from the wide receivers in the NFL, and we just want to be among the ones that are competing at the highest level.”

Little’s commitment to improving his skills has not gone unnoticed by first-year Browns coach Rob Chudzinski.

“I’ve been really pleased with Greg all along,” Chudzinski said. “He’s made really big strides in the spring. He still has a long ways to go and a lot to learn about football and playing receiver and the details of the position. That’s the biggest thing I stress with all the guys.

“Guys have potential, but it’s about knowledge, it’s about detail, and it’s about drive. Those are the things, to reach your potential, you have to focus on. That’s what we’ve been talking a lot about”

Part of Little’s drive came from the player acquisitions made by the Browns’ front-office staff this offseason. They added linebacker Paul Kruger from the reigning Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens and tight end Kellen Davis from the Chicago Bears, as well as kicker Shayne Graham from the Houston Texans and former Atlanta defensive back Chris Owens, all of whom have postseason experience.

“We all want to win, and we have a few free agents, guys that came into the building and showed us, by example, what it takes to contend in the NFL and to go on and be in the postseason,” Little said. “We’re all working toward the common goal of competing at a very high level throughout the duration of the season.”

In addition to their offseason free-agent signings, the Browns added veteran wide receiver Davone Bess in a draft weekend trade with the Miami Dolphins, a move which Little applauded as a key factor in improving the team’s receiving corps.

“Davone definitely is the senior of our wide receiver corps, and he brings that approach,” Little said. “He’s one of the first ones in the building, and you see him at his locker and he’s always studying. He leads by example, and definitely is outspoken as well. Josh (Gordon) is just an all-around great talent. He works hard; he takes great notes. He works on his craft a lot in the film room. We’re all just trying to get better.”

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