Included below are select quotes from interviews with the following Browns players during today's media availability:
- RB George Atkinson
- WR Corey Coleman
- P Britton Colquitt
- WR Rashard Higgins
- WR Ricardo Louis
- DL Stephen Paea
- WR Jordan Payton
RB George Atkinson III:
On being a Cleveland Brown and his first day with the team:
"It has definitely been a blessing to have a town to call home and play football in. When you think of the Browns, you think of the legacy of great running backs here – Jim Brown, Leroy Kelly, guys like that who really set a great foundation for the running back position and this whole organization winning championships here. I'm happy to be here and continue that legacy."
On if he was worried about not being with an NFL team after his release from the Raiders:
"I wasn't worried. I know God has a plan. I have put in a lot of work and I put a lot of good things on film. There are a lot of things I still need to work on, but I had faith that my film would show coaches that I could play at this level."
On what he learned from his dad, former NFL DB George Atkinson, about being an NFL player:
"What it means to be a professional – you can't make the same mistakes twice, how to carry yourself on and off the field, how to approach this game and know that it is a business. You can move, like yesterday, I can move from any team at any time with how this business works, but I still have to remain humble, hungry and a professional."
On how he ended up playing offense, given his father was one of the most memorable hitters in NFL history:
"I don't know. I guess I can blame my twin (former Notre Dame DB Josh Atkinson) for that because he plays corner. Somebody needed to line up against him (laughter). I just loved carrying the ball, running the ball. My brother had a passion for defending the ball. We worked against each other to make each other better."
On his running style:
"I'm explosive, a slasher, a guy who you put in space, I can make a play. I'm willing to do anything for my teammates and I want to win games."
WR Corey Coleman:
On how ready he is to start the season:
"I'm excited. Working every day to really be at our best on Sunday when we play the Eagles. Get to put four quarters together finally."
On if he's ready to start fresh in the regular season now that he is healthy:
"Yeah, we are starting fresh. Preseason, we look at them like practice and it is kind of hard only playing a quarter out there not really getting a feel, but now, it is time to go."
On why Browns coaches are hard on him at times:
"They drafted me in the first round so they expect a lot out of me and I expect a lot out of myself. They are going to coach me hard so I can be prepared for big time games starting Sunday and the regular season."
On if he has the Browns playbook and terminology down well:
"Right, I have it down. We put in new stuff every day so it is just learning how to learn. It is kind of different from being in college and playbook wise."
On the impact the Browns rookie WRs will can make this season:
"We have a good group of guys, even the vets that are with us and the rookies. We have a special group of guys and everyone should help out a lot."
P Britton Colquitt:
On being released by the Broncos and signing with the Browns:
"We knew that this could be an option obviously when the trade happened for them. It was tough for me just leaving somewhere that I was at for so long, but it has been a warm welcome. It helps that it is warm. That is nice (laughter). Beautiful here so far. With Mr. (Jimmy) Haslam being the owner, there is kind of like a Tennessee connection there. I have met him a couple times before. Great organization. The players have been awesome, the upstairs and then all the coaches are super welcoming. They really take care of their own here. Obviously, the fan base is second to none from everything I have heard and just loyalty and things like that. I'm really looking forward to being part of such a historic organization. It made the move easy. I haven't gotten the family here yet, but they are looking forward to coming out."
On if it is difficult to leave the defending Super Bowl champion Broncos for a Browns team that feels as if it is rebuilding:
"I guess maybe you could say that, but I don't feel like that right now. The mentality on this team right now is about winning. (Head) Coach (Hue) Jackson, that is all he talks about is winning, and it is very positive and it's not this negative anything. It has really been great. It feels like you are part of a winning team already and we haven't got to the season yet, but it feels good. It was obviously great to have those seasons. When I started in Denver, it was kind of in the (former Broncos QB Tim) Tebow era so it wasn't exactly the (former Colts and Broncos QB) Peyton (Manning) era. Nothing against Tim – I love Tim, good guy and everything and we won some games – but it is not all about that. It feels really good. It is a great organizational feel right now."
On if he can hold on FG and PAT attempts:
"I do hold, yes sir. We were doing that today and we are already kind of grooving, us three – (K) Patrick (Murray) and (LS) Charley (Hughlett) and me. I think it is going to be good. It is not going to take long for us to get going."
WR Rashard Higgins:
On making the 53-man roster:
"First of all, I just want to say it is unbelievable. It is a dream come true at first. I know I have been working all my life for this. Just being young, you never knew you had to make a 53-man roster. You just knew going to the NFL was a dream. It is a blessing to be on this 53. We are getting ready for Philly and that is what we have going forward."
On the Browns young WR corps and if it is intimidating:
"I wouldn't say it is intimidating. We are just learning from the vet. Hawk (WR Andrew Hawkins) always has good insight to what we could do better, how we should do things. Not only him but (senior offensive assistant) Coach (Al) Saunders, as well. We are young. We have a lot of growing to do and that is what we look forward to."
On keeping emotions in check while preparing for the regular season opener:
"My biggest thing is just do my job, just attack what I have going forward and don't leave time for error. Don't leave any minor errors. Do what I can do and keep going forward."
On if pre-snap movement in Head Coach Hue Jackson's offense is challenging:
"I feel like I'm getting everything down pretty good. I have been trying to learn the slot position coming along. I'm still learning. I'm trying to learn the whole offense, trying to learn everybody's position, but it is challenging. It is something that I'm looking forward to going forward."
WR Ricardo Louis:
On if he was nervous while the Browns determining the final roster:
"Not really. I have been preparing this whole training camp and offseason for this. Now that I have an opportunity to play, I'm going to be ready. No need to be nervous, really."
On what he brings to the table that secured his position on the team:
"There could be a lot of reasons. For me, I put my best foot forward every chance I get. I work hard. I showed them flashes of making plays going against some of the best and being able to compete at a high level."
On embracing his role on special teams:
"I have embraced it a lot. I just took it and ran with it. I played all four years on special teams at Auburn so I was pretty much used to the techniques and the different kind of schemes they have us doing, just being the overall specialist on the field."
On if he's ready to play:
"I'm ready to roll. Even though I have been out a couple weeks, I have still been mentally in it, mentally getting reps while I'm on the field and in the film room. I'm making sure I'm on top of my game so when it is my time to go, I will be ready."
On frustrations not being able to play the past few weeks:
"It has been frustrating not being able to compete, but I'm a competitor. I like to be out there, get better every day. Not being out there was really bothering me, but I also knew I had to get myself ready. I can't be out there injured making whatever was wrong with me worse."
On his emotions preparing for his first NFL game on Sunday:
"Excited. I'm a little anxious to get out there and get the jitterbugs out, but I'm ready. I'm ready to get out there and see how it is. There are a lot of people talking about this and that, but I just want to experience it for myself. I'm finally going to get a chance to."
DL Stephen Paea:
On joining the Browns:
"It is good when you go to a team that wants you, wants you to play for them. I will be here rotating in and I'm trying to help the team. I'm happy. My family is happy about it."
On describing himself as a football player:
"I use my strength. Obviously, it is my sixth year going into the league and I'm going to use my experience. That is going to be quite an advantage for me helping these young boys. I didn't know that I was the oldest on the D-line (laughter) until I started looking around. That is the first time in my career. I have to step up and be a leader there in the D-line room, not just vocally but as far as helping the young boys out."
On if he can play and contribute right away and if that is his expectation:
"Both. I see it as just a matter of timing right now. I have to get in the playbook. Obviously, I have played in the league – like I said, sixth year right now. It is nothing new to me standing if it's over the center, over the guard or over the tackle being a contributor right now, and like I said, it's a matter of time just learning the playbook and learning the plays so I can just go out there and play fast.
WR Jordan Payton:
On what he did after learning he made the 53-man roster:
"I was still a little upset about the UCLA loss (laughter). When you found out you were on the team, you just continue to do what you. You just continue to focus in and prepare your mind, prepare yourself for the upcoming week. You have to go. Come Monday, come Sunday, you have to get ready so I just got ready."
On preparing for the speed of an NFL regular season game:
"That is what work is for, hard work. I dedicate myself to just keep working. I stay in the moment. I stay here right now. I try not to think about the future. You obviously plan for the future, but you work for today. Every day I come out here and work. I get better every day. Doing that you expect to play well."
On how he remains focused:
"Breathing. You breathe, you stay calm and you trust what you have been taught. You trust your coaches. We have amazing coaches here, unbelievable, unbelievable coaching staff, and you trust your foundation."
On if he views the Browns' youth as an advantage in any way:
"I can't speak for the other people, and I mean that in the nicest way – I can't [speak] from their perspective – but from mine, it is just we are hungry. We are a group who came in, and we know what we wanted. We all came from programs that we had great success. It seems to me that right now we are all on the same page. With that, that is a good starting point. You are all on the same page, you are hungry and then you mix talent and hard work together. I don't think the age is going to matter at that point. I think it is just about making plays."