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Corey Coleman flashes big-time ability, focused on improvement as Browns break for summer

When rookie wide receiver Corey Coleman arrived for the Browns' OTAs, one of the first things he did was ask to go one-on-one against veteran cornerback Tramon Williams.

"I wanted to go against the best corner. (Pro Bowler Joe Haden) isn't not out there so I wanted to go against a starter," Coleman said while on Cleveland Browns Daily earlier this week.

"I went against him, we got great work in, and he respected me for that because a rookie coming in doesn't usually do that. It was no disrespect, I just wanted to get better and I know the only way I'm going to get better is to go against the best."

That's been Coleman's mindset since coming to Cleveland as its first-round draft pick and one of almost two dozen rookies finding their footing within the organization.

And as the Browns concluded their mandatory veteran minicamp Thursday afternoon, the final installment of offseason workouts before the team reunites for training camp in late July, Coleman said he's starting to settle into his new home and new role.

"I feel really great, starting to get everything down, starting to adapt to different situations," he said, adding, "With rookie minicamp, you're thrown into the fire. You don't know what to expect. Regular minicamp, you know what to expect, you know what plays we're running, you have the upper hand."

So far this offseason, Coleman — the 2015 Biletnikoff Award winner who amassed 3,009 yards and 33 touchdowns in three seasons at Baylor — seems to have looked every bit the playmaker he was with the Bears.

"He's a tremendous player. He's going to be pretty good. I ride him pretty hard because he has so much ability and I want to get it out of him," head coach Hue Jackson said Thursday.

"He's really shown why we drafted him in the first round. He is a tremendous talent. If he keeps working like he is and stays as humble and he has great desire to be a great football player, I think that's going to happen for him. He's still got to earn it. He's got to work for it. He's got to go fight for it to go get it. I think he will."

Indeed, the Dallas native isn't about to rest on past laurels.

"What I did at Baylor doesn't matter anymore," Coleman said. "I'm on to a new chapter in my life."

Coleman is competing for playing time in a crowded wide receivers room that includes veterans like Andrew Hawkins, Taylor Gabriel, Marlon Moore, Darius Jennings and Rannell Hall and fellow rookies in Rashard "Hollywood" Higgins, Ricardo Louis, Jordan Payton and Dennis Parks. Coleman is also part of the organization's largest draft class since 1979.

"The reason they brought all of us 14 guys in is because we can give this team a spark," he said.

The Browns took to the field to finish the three-day veterans' minicamp.

The same goes for the receivers, he said. "We're all different types of receivers, but we can all help in certain ways."

Coleman's style of play seems to be defined by his speed and what vice president of player personnel Andrew Berry, who played a hand in drafting the receiver, called "short area quickness."

Now, Coleman said he's focused on refining certain aspects of his game and putting hours in the film room.

"When I first got in for rookie minicamp, I was running my routes, just cutting them short because I was new to them. But I started watching film of where I need to be, it's helped me out so much," he said.

To be sure, Coleman isn't a finished product and he'll be the first to tell you that.

"I just want to get better each and every day. I think I'm taking a step each and every day and just getting better. That's what I want to focus on," he said. "One day a time. Each day, can I be better than I was before.

Coleman added: "I love this game, I take this game to heart. I work at my craft, I try to be the very best I can be so they brought me in here to make plays so I don't want to let anyone down, I don't want to let myself down.

"I pride myself on working hard and living up to why I was brought here."

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