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Josh Cribbs excited by Browns rookie Jabrill Peppers' 'potential'

Former Browns star Josh Cribbs thinks Jabrill Peppers can do big things in Cleveland.

Cribbs recently told NFL Network's Good Morning Football he's looking forward to how the rookie safety and kick returner contributes this season.

"I'm excited on what he has the potential to bring," said Cribbs, who owns 11 team return records and is tied for the most kickoff return touchdowns in NFL history.

"The Cleveland Browns, we look good on paper, but we still have to go out and play the game and that's always the most important thing."

Peppers, the former Michigan standout who has been described as an "ultimate Swiss Army knife," was one of three first-round Draft picks taken by the Browns this past year.

Peppers played safety, linebacker, kick returner and some running back in three seasons with the Wolverines. And when training camp starts later this month, he'll have an opportunity to prove how those skills can translate at the next level.

Earlier this summer, special teams coordinator Chris Tabor said Peppers reminded him of Cribbs, who played eight seasons in Cleveland and recently retired.

"The way he's built, he kind of reminds me a little bit in the Cribbsy mold," Tabor said in June. "He has some thickness to him. If you look at our past returners, even when I was in Chicago with Devin [Hester], Devin was a little slighter guy. Travis (Benjamin) was a really slight guy. He's a mix of more of a Cribbsy and can go north-south. But I thought he had good vision coming out, and you could see it on a lot of plays where he could just create on his own, and I think those are good traits in a returner."

Asked to outline the "Cribbsy mold," Cribbs said: "I hope it's scoring touchdowns and being a factor on the team."

"I think it's a boost, it's an honor given to (Peppers) that, 'Hey this is the guy I want you to emulate," Cribbs said. "You can easily step into his shoes, you have the speed, you have the size. That's the Cribbsy mold."

Peppers, who fielded 39 punts for 510 yards, a touchdown and 18 kickoff returns for 483 yards, should help a unit that finished 28th in yards per kickoff return and 26th in yards per punt return.

"I thought he was electric in college as a playmaker," Tabor said. "It's a matter of helping us get our return game to where it's supposed to be, where the Cleveland Browns are supposed to be returning the ball and hopefully we can get to that. We still have a lot of work to do, but I think we can get there."

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