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Hue Jackson press conference - 5/13

Opening statement:

"That was a lot of fun. It's always great for the first time to see the rookie class together on the field. It was very exciting for our coaches, I think for the players. I think it was a good start. I think the first thing I noticed we have some guys we need to get in shape extremely fast. It also showed me how impressive it has been to watch our veteran players get in shape and really work hard. It's a good first day for the Browns and for our young players. It was a good first day in the classroom. It was a good first day on the field for them to start learning how we go about doing things here. I think the most important thing, for me, is to get these guys caught up to speed with our veteran group, as far as the culture in our building…I think something I talked about a lot last night with them, something I talked about with them today because I think it's very important that these guys have got to assimilate themselves into what we've already established. Our veteran players have worked extremely hard. The culture here is great, and I think it's really important that these young guys caught up. They have a lot of work to do. I think they saw that today, and it's a good start."

On his first impressions of WR Corey Coleman:

"He's explosive and he can catch the ball. He's got to get in shape (laughter). He's one of the guys that has to get in shape, but the talent – he's extremely talented and gifted. I think he saw himself, 'Woah, this is different.' It is, but we'll get him to where he needs to be. I'm excited about him, as I am about all of our rookie class. He has the characteristics that we thought he had, and we're looking forward to getting him where he needs to be."

On if it is hard to not think of the drafted WRs as a group or if they are individually distinguishing themselves:

"I think they are a group, but I think over time they will start to individually distinguish themselves. It's a very talented group. I watched them – I think the first day jitters of some, the smoothness of some and just watching them compete was exciting for the first day. That being said, I think they all understand we've got some catching up to do to even have a chance to compete with the varsity guys because those guys can run all day right now, and these guys have to get to that point."

On if there will be a big learning curve for Coleman when it comes to route running:

"I don't see that because he's so athletic. He has the ability to sink his hips and get in and out of breaks. Obviously, he's very talented. I know that's what everybody else was concerned about, but I don't think that's what we're concerned about. I think we have the best receiver coach in football. We'll get him where he needs to be. The talent will just continue to show itself."

On QB Cody Kessler saying his meeting with Jackson was the best meeting throughout his draft process and if Jackson felt that connection too:

"It was good communication. I think probably what he enjoyed was there was a lot of dialogue back and forth. I think it's not just the coach's way. There's give and take in everything you do with players. I think he understood that my job is to create the environment, this is how I want it, and he was able to feel that. I think players really want discipline and structure, and they want it done the right way. Then, I think they kind of fall in. Our conversation was a lot about football, things that he could do better. I think he's seen the potential of him growing and getting better being around me, and I saw the potential of a young man who was willing to take the information and learn from it. It was a good conversation. I'm glad he felt that way. It made me feel good. I didn't know that. At the same time, he has some growing to do, but he did some outstanding things today, as well."

On the things that Kessler needs to work on:

"I think with quarterbacks, especially young quarterbacks, it's just being able to work quicker. In the National Football League, things open and close very quickly. I think he will work on those things, more footwork related. It's not anything else, and I've seen him clean it up in individual, our individual period on to the next period. That told me that he knows how to take information and use it to his advantage. He was able to do that, but you have to do it consistently. He had a good first day, and I think our top-of-the-line, as people would say, draft picks showed themselves. That was exciting. I think on defense, (LB) Emmanuel (Ogbah), watching him…that's a big looking athlete who has explosion. You're watching (LB) Joe Schobert and I could go on and on and on. Those guys, it was good to see them be out there on the field. But again, I'll take it back to our veteran group. They've got to catch those guys. It was just the first day, but I think the guys are starting…I think the first day showed them exactly where they need to get to be a part of this football team."

On why he chose to add a second quarterback in the form of a veteran rather than an undrafted rookie:

"Because a veteran's probably been through it and knows…wouldn't be disappointed if he didn't get a lot of reps or he did. I just didn't want to wear Cody out the first day being out there. I thought that was something that I needed to make a decision about, and we did as an organization because I think it's important. We don't want to take a chance of all of a sudden having a guy work too much. I think (QB) Ricky (Stanzi) did a good job, and I don't think Ricky is threatened by the situation. I think he walked in here understanding exactly what the opportunity was and was happy to get the opportunity."

On if he is upset that guys are not in the kind of shape that he wants them in:

"No, not yet because they haven't been around us. I don't think anybody would really understand. I don't think our veteran players understood it until they went through it. It'd be the same thing with these young men. The difference with this group is we put them on the field first, whereas our other guys, we had two weeks for them to understand where we were headed before they started. These guys, they will get acclimated real quickly. They'll understand they need to even be out there. That's the fun part. The fun part for me was watching where they were today and knowing where they could be a week or two weeks from now. That's very exciting to me."

On if OL Shon Coleman is OK, given he did not practice today:

"He will be. He had an MCL injury that he had repaired in January. Like I've done before with everybody, we are going to really take it slow and we are going to get him where we need to be before we put him out there. He'll be ready later on. He is working hard. You saw him out there doing things. We are always with anybody who is injured or who have had an injury, we'll take it a little bit easier with them to get them where they need to be. As you've seen, it's competing out there. You want to make sure a guy is ready before you put him out there."

On if he had 'good-natured words' with WR Corey Coleman about his conditioning:

"Oh, yes I did (laughter)."

On if he will share his comments to Coleman:

"I will not do that (laughter). I did. He understands where he needs to be, and I am excited about him. He gets it. It would be different if I didn't think a young man gets it. He does. He knows there is work to do. That is what this is all about. That is why they call us coaches. We have to take these guys and mold them into our culture and into our idea of being football players for the Cleveland Browns, and we'll get him there."

On if the Browns are comfortable with OL Mike Matthews size at C, considering his family history and being a three-year starter but yet still not receiving an invitation to the NFL Combine:

"Yeah, that didn't bother me. As I said before, if a guy can play, he can play. We are giving him an opportunity, and we will see more of him as we go. Obviously, his bloodlines are spectacular. As we all know, that doesn't get you on a football team. He has to earn the right to be here. I think he understands that, as well. I think that is the way that he would want it to be. I felt good about everybody out there today. It was in shorts, it was the first day and it was a little bit hotter here than what it's been. For all of the young men, there were some guys who were in pretty good shape, but there were also some guys that it was eye opening that they go, 'Whoa.' We have to be able to go all day long. That's how we play. We play at a fast pace and we kind of go. Guys have to get ready for that."

On the benefit of having a veteran coach like wide receivers coach Al Saunders working with the young WRs:

"Al Saunders is one of my guys. It is not so much the veteran [component] – he is one of the best coaches in this league that this league has ever seen. I think you all know what he means to me, personally and professionally. He is as good as there is. Not only is he a motivator, he knows how to take guys all the way from Step A all the way to Step Z. He's the best I have ever been around. I am not worried about where these young guys are right now. Trust me when I tell you, when we get where we need to be, these guys will be exactly how we want them to be when it is time for them to be that way."

On the Browns including four Ks in rookie minicamp:

"Oh my gosh! We did, didn't' we? (laughter). In this situation, you do everything you can. This is a camp where you also have some guys that you want to take a look at and see who they are and what they are. Boy, did we ever. We have some guys here that we are going to give an opportunity to and see who they are and what they are. There is nothing better than to do that in this situation right now. Yeah, we have some legs out there, that's for sure."

On if it is a unique challenge for the coaching staff to work with such a large draft class:

"I don't think it's challenges that way. I don't look at it like that – because of the draft size – what the challenge will be. I think there are going to be some tremendous battles to be on our roster, if anything, but as far as any other challenges, I don't see them that way. We treat everybody the same. We coach every position the same. We coach them hard. We have great expectations and we demand a lot. I think our guys and these young players will start to understand exactly how we do it because it is the way we do it. Guys have to kind of mold themselves into how these veteran players have all of the sudden made a decision of this is how we work, this is who we are. The biggest challenge I think we have is when it comes time to make decisions of who is on this team, obviously along with (executive vice president of football operations) Sashi (Brown), (chief strategy officer) Paul DePodesta and (vice president of player personnel) Andrew (Berry), those will be the biggest decisions we will have as we move forward."

On QB Cody Kessler's comment that Jackson had 20 pointers for him during the first walkthrough and if all of them focused on footwork:

"I can't tell you all of that (laughter). I can't share all of that with you. As you guys know, I am pretty hands on with that position and there is a certain level of play that I expect, whether it is from Cody Kessler to (QBs Josh) McCown to RGIII (Robert Griffin III) to whoever. Whoever walks out there under center, there is an expectation that I have on how you play and how you go about your business. I wanted to put him in that mode right away because again, that is the first time I have ever coached him. They say first impressions are lasting. That's all I wanted to accomplish because I have a high expectation for him as he continues to compete. He has to continue to grow and get better, but at the same time, he is a very eager young man, he wants to do it and he is talented."

On if Kessler could compete for a starting role:

"I think it's too soon to say that he can't. I think it's too soon to say that he will. At the same time, he is still a young player. You have to earn the right to be in that group. We drafted him. We know he has some ability. I think you guys have all seen it. The guy can throw the football very accurately to people and throw in tight spaces. He did that extremely well today. He has to be able to, again, handle all the different things that come with playing quarterback in the National Football League. I think it's way too early to tell all of that right now. Is he talented? Yes. I think we all saw that today."

On there being a difference between being ready to play at Baylor and being ready to play in the NFL:

"There's no question. I think we all recognize that. I think it's different in the National Football League. Receivers have to be able to run all day long. It's different from the college game. Again, the guy made it through practice. He made some plays and catches and all that stuff. But at the same time, there's a level of what it should look like for me. Maybe this is a little pleasing of me that he needs to get better from a conditioning standpoint to be able to do it for as long as I know as receiver has to do it and the way our receiver do it now. In order for him to walk in that room and compete with those guys, he's got to get in great shape. That's not talent at all. It has nothing to do with that. It's getting in shape and that's okay because we will get him there very quickly."

On if what he has seen from Coleman typical of what he has seen from other rookies in their first camp:

"Sometimes, oh yeah. I've been around some guys, the first day, again these guys flew in some of them got in late. It's a different sleeping environment. It's a new environment for them. When I say about getting in shape, I am not putting him down by any stretch of the imagination. Trust me, this whole group needs to get in better shape. I just pointed him out because, again, I think the guy is very talented and I think if anything his eyes really opened about where he needs to get to very fast. I think he is very excited to do it because he knows what it is going to take to play up here. This is not a negative. This is something that I anticipated in some areas. We will get these guys there because we have one of the best strength staff that there are in football."

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