- Day 1 of the Browns' rookie minicamp showcased Myles Garrett, the athletically gifted defensive end and No. 1 overall NFL Draft pick, doing a few athletic things. While there's only so much to be gleaned in practices without live action, the former Texas A&M's talent was on full display Friday afternoon in Berea.
Browns head coach Hue Jackson, though, made it clear that Garrett will have to earn his keep. "He's very talented, but again, he's going to have to earn the right to be what we think he can be," Jackson said. "We're not going to hand him anything."
Garrett amassed 31 sacks in three seasons with the Aggies.
- Browns safety and 25th overall draft pick Jabrill Peppers did not practice Friday because of an unsettled participation agreement. Jackson said both sides were disappointed that the former Michigan standout couldn't suit up.
"We're in the process of getting that done," Jackson said. "That's just part of it. We'll work through that, we'll get him up to speed. He did a great job in meetings last night. He's champing at the bit and ready to go, we'll get him out here soon."
- As expected, there were plenty of eyeballs trained on quarterback DeShone Kizer, who showed off the arm talent that made him one of the draft's top-rated quarterbacks. Kizer's talent, Jackson said, is undeniable. "He's a very talented player, a big guy with a big arm, very bright and I think he has a lot of upside," Jackson said, "but he's got to work to do it and I think he knows that."
Therein lies the challenge for Kizer, who saw his draft stock fall a bit after an inconsistent final season at Notre Dame. Jackson, who spent much of Friday afternoon tutoring the 21-year-old Toledo native, said Kizer's development is still very much a work in progress. "The consistency of playing quarterback in National Football League at a high level is a challenge," he said.
The 2017 Browns rookies participate in the first day of rookie mini camp.
- That loud voice you hear on the practice field? It's likely new Browns defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, who's tasked with helping mold a young defense that struggled in 2016.
Williams, the 27-year veteran who joined Cleveland's staff in January, is regarded as one of the league's top coordinators, having assembled five top-five defenses. So far, he's already left his mark in Berea with the team's veteran players. On Friday, it was the rookies' turn to see what has Jackson feeling encouraged about the future of the Browns' defense.
"He has a way of getting guys to do what he needs them to do," Jackson said. "Again, I think our players are really going to benefit from his tutelage and the knowledge that he has and how he gets them to do it."
- In an interview on Cleveland Browns Daily last week, Jackson said the culture in the Browns' locker room is as strong as it has been since he arrived in January 2016. Now, the rookies will have to follow suit.
"What I'm trying to do right now is get them to understand the culture that's here and what they're going to come into and truly understand that they're just a piece of the puzzle, that they have to come in and really embrace the veteran guys and understand how they do it," he said.
"But in order to do that, we're going to kind of indoctrinate these guys over the next three days and give them an idea of what it's going to be like when the other guys are with them. Because they've got to earn the right to be in that locker room. I don't care who it is, from Myles Garrett to the last guy we drafted, they have to be able to do that because that's the only way this locker room is going to be able to accept them."
The Browns will come together as a full team for OTAs, which begin May 23.