5 things to know: Hue Jackson sees QBs 'emerging,' showing overall improvement

  1. Sporting a No. 25 jersey, Calvin Pryor was seen in a Browns uniform for the first time by reporters as he went through his second OTA with his new team.

The hard-hitting safety was acquired last week in a trade that sent veteran linebacker Demario Davis to the New York Jets. Entering his fourth season, Pryor is looking to make an impact on a Cleveland defense that is searching for its best four or five defensive backs, regardless of position.

"Obviously he is a young talented player that we have added to our secondary. He is a safety that we feel good about," Browns coach Hue Jackson said. "He will play back there in the secondary at safety and we will give him an opportunity to compete and play."

Pryor gives defensive coordinator Gregg Williams another versatile piece to utilize as he shapes his rotations and depth chart. In the last month, the Browns have added first-round safety Jabrill Peppers, veteran defensive back Jason McCourty and now Pryor to a unit that features a handful of other veterans -- Joe Haden and Jamar Taylor -- and a bevy of players in the early years of their respective NFL careers.

"We just want to get a guy – which, we made a decision to trade a guy and add a guy to our team – and what we are going to do is get him with the rest of the guys and when it is all said and done, we are going to play the best four guys that are able to play," Jackson said. "It is not so much, "if a guy is at this position, that position.' One thing about Gregg, he has a lot of flexibility in his system to be able to play guys wherever we need to play them."

  1. Jackson said he wasn't sure if the quarterback rotation he utilized during OTAs would be the same at next week's minicamp.

Cody Kessler entered OTAs as No. 1 in line with veteran Brock Osweiler, Kevin Hogan and rookie DeShone Kizer falling behind in no set order. Jackson stressed he would be hands-on with Kizer, the second-round selection who has periodically received a few series with the first-team offensive line.

"I think guys are emerging. I think guys are working hard. I think the whole group has improved, but again, I am going to take a look at it after we get done with OTAs and see where we are," Jackson said. "I think guys are making strides. I see it all the time, and they have got to continue to work and work hard. The young guys are getting better. Cody has improved. Brock is doing well. So, we are going to take it all into account and see where we are."

  1. Jackson said he hasn't been concerned with the handful of injured players who have been in and out of OTA sessions over the past three weeks. On Tuesday, the wide receiver position was particularly shorthanded with veteran Kenny Britt and Corey Coleman on the sidelines dealing with minor injuries.

Both players, though, have logged some significant work in team settings, and their respective health remains the most important thing at this point of the offseason, Jackson said.

"There's things that I want to make sure that they understand and know the foundation of what we are doing, Corey more so than Kenny right now, because Corey has been here, he knows the language and understands it," Jackson said. "Kenny, it's important that he's out there as much as he has been, because he needs to make sure that he knows how to do things. I think the group, once we get them all back and get them healthy, I think we will represent ourselves well."

  1. After a season of repeated adversity at the center position, the Browns have their bases covered at the moment.

The offensive line currently boasts eight players who are considered centers or have played the position in the past. That can present issues when it comes to rotations, so a handful of these players have been seen at either left or right guard during team drills. Marcus Martin, a two-year starter who was claimed off waivers from the San Francisco 49ers, and Anthony Fabiano, who started last year's season finale, both showed their versatility Tuesday at guard.

"They have the versatility to do it, so we give them the chance to," Jackson said. "Some are just strictly playing guard, and some are playing center and guard. Again, because of the numbers, we have got some guys that still aren't practicing yet. We're trying to give guys the best opportunity to have a chance to make our football team. I think that is what's important."

  1. Already emerging as one of the team's vocal leaders, linebacker Christian Kirksey has even more on his plate after the departure of Davis. At Tuesday's OTA, Kirksey broke down the group before the start of 11-on-11 drills, something Davis would typically handle.

"I think he's ready. I think that has always been a part of his makeup. I think he has that ability to do it," Jackson said. "I think any time when there has been another real vocal person in the group, and when that person goes, it allows another person to start to step up. I think Christian is doing what I know he can do, and it's important. We need that kind of guy."

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