Veteran safety Donte Whitner said he hasn't met Hue Jackson just yet, but he likes what he's seen and heard about the new Browns coach.
"My impressions are good. I know Hue Jackson, I've played against his offenses the last couple of years. Very, very detailed in the work, very unorthodox on the offensive side of the football," Whitner said Monday during the annual Cleveland Auto Show at the I-X Center.
While there, Whitner and wide receiver Brian Hartline — two Northeast Ohio natives — signed autographs for almost two hours and took pictures with Browns fans who came out to see some of their favorite stars.
Hartline, who is entering his second season in Cleveland, was also complimentary of Jackson.
"I think it's exciting. He's got a great track record. In the end, whatever helps us win, that's the only thing I care about," Hartline said. "A lot of people ask me what I think of him … anything to help us win, that's all I'm here for."
After a disappointing end to the season because of a broken clavicle, Hartline said he's eager to get back on the field. After all, Jackson has spoken of rebuilding the Browns through the NFL Draft and getting the most out of the current roster.
"I think any time you have the season like we had you kind of want to get back to it," Hartline said. "I'm looking forward to the first week of April.
Whitner, a three-time Pro Bowl selection who played in a Super Bowl while with the San Francisco 49ers, said he's "very optimistic and hopeful" when it comes to the future.
"I know that each and every year, you get a new start. And any team can be in the playoffs, any team can be in the Super Bowl … it just takes a certain amount of things to click, a little bit of luck, a little bit of staying injury-free," Whitner said.
"You give yourself the best chance by going in there each and every day, doing the best that you can, working as hard as you can, taking it home with you, taking it back to the football field over and over again being a bunch of men growing up together. That's how you win football games."
Former Browns star Bernie Kosar is set to sign autographs at the Auto Show on Wednesday evening and Jackson will make an appearance Thursday.