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Schwartz continues to improve

Posted Dec 11, 2012

Rookie offensive tackle Mitchell Schwartz has worked every day, both in the classroom and on the field, to improve his game.

According to his coaches and teammates, Cleveland Browns rookie right tackle Mitchell Schwartz takes copious amounts of notes in the meeting rooms and very rarely makes the same mistake twice.

Schwartz is also a bit of a perfectionist.

Despite limiting Kansas City outside linebacker Justin Houston to one quarterback pressure and no sacks after he entered the game tied for fifth in the NFL, Schwartz was critical of his own play during the team’s 30-7 victory.

“I don’t think I played particularly great,” Schwartz said. “He is a great player. I’ve got a lot of respect for him. You could see on film going into the week and also playing against him that he is a really great player. As an offense, we did a pretty decent job of being balanced, running and passing and that always helps out. I think we just played a very well-rounded game.”

Schwartz and the Browns’ offensive linemen have allowed 24 sacks on rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden. Being a rookie in the NFL, Schwartz quickly learned the level of play has improved since college.

“You face really good players, week-in and week-out,” Schwartz said. “As much as you know that going in, as much as you prepare for it, it doesn’t really hit you until you’ve got a really good pass-rusher, a really good guy against the run that you’re going against every week. In college, you only face two or three of those every year that are NFL quality. Now, you face it every week. That’s probably the biggest adjustment, getting used to that.”

Schwartz’s perfectionism and adjustment period has led to success for the Browns.

The Browns enter this week winners of their last three games and four of their past five at Cleveland Browns Stadium. The team looks to close out their first winning record in home games for the first time since it went 7-1 during the 2007 season.

Prior to 2012, the Browns won three home games in each of the previous three seasons.

“I think everyone’s done a real good job of trusting the process,” Schwartz said. “We started out pretty slowly. There could’ve been different scenarios in how things played out there, but everyone’s done a good job during the week of practice. That’s the biggest thing, especially with us young guys, understanding the importance of practice. If you’re not doing the right things, if you’re not getting the work in, you’re not just going to show up on game day and get the job done. The team, as a whole, has done a good job of having good weeks of preparation.

“It’s good to be more consistent. At the beginning of the year, the offense would have a poor game and not give the team a chance to win. Now, it’s more of a team game. We got the big punt return and the special teams is doing (well) as a unit. The defense is clamping down after one play and the offense had another productive day. Ultimately, it’s about coming together. There’s a consistency of it. That’s the biggest thing. At the beginning of the year, we had flashes. That’s what’s starting to come together now.”

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