There's more than a month left before we'll see football on the fields of the Browns practice facility. [
Fortunately, we've got more than a month's worth of your questions to tackle over the next few Thursdays.
We'll start with five.
Do you think Myles Garrett will be available for camp by July 27? Lord knows we do not need our No. 1 overall pick, whom we need big-time, to be injured. - Thaddeus L., Youngstown
The official word from the Browns was that Garrett was expected to be ready for training camp. The talented pass rusher injured his foot on the penultimate day of minicamp and was evaluated by multiple doctors, including James Voos of University Hospitals and foot and ankle specialist Robert Anderson of OrthoCarolina. The Browns view training camp as an important step in Garrett's development entering his rookie season but won't put him in a vulnerable position or rush him into action because what he's able to do on the field in September and beyond is far more important.
What if DeShone Kizer does pan out? What do the Browns do with their two first-round picks? What position(s) should be the focus? -- Diamond H., Cleveland
It's way too early to tell on specific positions in this hypothetical but I'll safely file this scenario in the "great problems to have" category. The luxury that comes with locking up your franchise quarterback is the ability to hammer away at other spots on your roster with the best players available in the first round. The Steelers, for example, haven't used a first-round pick on a quarterback in 13 years and have been able to nab some of their best players with those selections. We'll know a lot more about the strengths of the 2018 draft class as the college season progresses.
Without a clear cut depth chart at WR, what are Richard Mullaney's chances of making the active roster? - Eric S., Claremont, NC
He's got a fighting chance just like every other member in the room, but he'll certainly have to stand out and make his case during training camp. The former Alabama and Oregon State receiver made a couple of nice grabs during minicamp. He'll need more of those if he's going to elevate past the likes of Rashard Higgins, Jordan Payton, Rannell Hall, James Wright and Mario Alford for the final couple of spots in the room.
Everybody has been reporting on the quarterback competition, the defensive line and competition in the defensive backfield. What I want to know is how is the competition going between Zane Gonzalez and Cody Parkey? As we all know one of these guys will be called upon to win a game a few times during the season as time is running out. - Greg T., Masury
It's still very early in the battle. Both made their kicks in pressure situations during practices open to the media, but there's so much more going on when we're not watching. Special teams coordinator Chris Tabor made it clear that both of the kickers were on equal footing, even though the Browns used a seventh-round pick on Gonzalez in April.
"I always look at whoever does the best is going to win the job, regardless if you are drafted or not drafted," Tabor said. "I have had players play for us that have been good players that were drafted and I have had players that have played for us that were not drafted, so that status does not mean anything to me."
Isn't the team leaving itself thin at the linebacker position? - Randy L., Akron
The Browns feel great about their top two linebackers, Jamie Collins Sr. and Christian Kirksey, both of whom signed extensions earlier this year. Tank Carder, one of the longest tenured members of the team, has seen an elevated role during the spring and could be in for way more defensive snaps than he's had in the past. The key will be who emerges among a group of youngsters, a number of whom arrived this offseason as undrafted free agents. Of note, Kenneth Olugbode made some nice plays during OTAs and minicamp and Joe Schobert has looked much more comfortable in the middle. It's also important to note the Browns could be playing a whole lot of nickel and dime because of the way NFL offenses have evolved in recent years. In those situations, Collins and Kirksey would be the only linebackers on the field. Still, some reliable depth would be nice behind Collins and Kirksey because injuries are an unfortunate reality in the NFL.