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Minicamp allowed coaches to learn

Posted Apr 18, 2013

Following the conclusion of minicamp on Thursday, Coach Rob Chudzinski said the three-day session was a learning experience for his coaching staff.

When Browns coach Rob Chudzinski called this week’s voluntary minicamp a “learning camp,” he was referring to his staff learning about the players as much as he was talking about the installation of the base offense, defense and special teams.

“You learn a lot,” Chudzinski said after Thursday’s practice. “You learn how guys learn. You learn how guys apply things; you learn how to best coach them, a lot of little things. They’re getting to know us as much as we’re getting to know them, how we operate and how we do things. It’s invaluable in that way.

“I’m very pleased with what we’ve been able to accomplish these last three days, putting the foundation in place and really working to get guys to understand where we want to go from a practice standpoint, got some of our base offense put in, our base defense put in, our base special teams put in. We’re working to build that foundation again, and build a winning team.”

Going through the first minicamp and round of installation has allowed Chudzinski and his staff to learn about each player. He saw competition from the secondary and retention from quarterback Brandon Weeden.

“What you’re really learning about these guys is mentally, how they learn,” Chudzinski said. “You’re learning about their desire, about how eager they are to work, and (Brandon’s) been great in terms of those things. As long as our focus and effort remains where it has been, I feel good about the direction we’re going.

“Buster (Skrine), I’ve been impressed with him and Chris Owens. They’ve done a nice job. Both of those guys are extremely competitive. They’re really into it, and they’re working at it.

“(Tashaun Gipson is) a bright guy, has good football instincts, and I know he’s very valuable on special teams. He’s done a great job there as well. He’s another guy who’s in the mix. We’ll see how things play out once we get everything rolled out and in pads, down the road in training camp.”

This week’s minicamp was the first time the players and coaches could work together in a football setting. During phase one of the offseason, the players and coaches were restricted to classroom work and physical conditioning drills with the strength and conditioning coach, Brad Roll, based on the collective bargaining agreement between the NFL and NFL Players Association.

Phase two of the offseason begins Monday for the Browns, followed by organized team activities. Then, the Browns will conduct a mandatory three-day minicamp.

“The June minicamp, with having put things in and had some time to really work on the fundamentals that we’ll have a chance to work on in the next three weeks with phase two and OTAs, it’ll run similarly,” Chudzinski said. “There will be a lot more situational work from a football standpoint, and I would expect that guys, having a lot more time in the systems under their belt, will be better and better by that time.”

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