Skip to main content

On-Field Observations

On-Field Observations: 1st day goal for Joel Bitonio at left tackle? Stop Myles Garrett

On his first official day as Cleveland's first-team left tackle, Joel Bitonio was thrown straight into the deep end.

Standing across from Bitonio on pretty much every snap he took during team drills Wednesday was none other than second-year pass rusher Myles Garrett.

"Yeah," Bitonio said, "that's always fun.

"I have said it about our tackles before, if you can block that guy, you are going to be able to block a lot of guys on Sunday. For me, I am ready to battle him and try to help me improve the most I can at tackle."

Bitonio, though, appeared to hold his own on Day 1, an encouraging sign as the Browns strive to put their best five linemen on the field. The group is expected to be the backbone of a new-look offense led by quarterback Tyrod Taylor and a host of fresh faces at the playmaker positions.

"I did not look over there and see a whiff or this or a guy just bearing down on the quarterback," Browns coach Hue Jackson said. "I saw some guys competing. I have great confidence in Joel. He is one of the best players on our football team. He can do it. He has proven himself to be a really good guard obviously, but I think that he has the versatility. I think that he is surprising himself that he can go out there and do anything."

-- The chain reaction of Bitonio's move to left tackle was the emergence of rookie Austin Corbett at left guard. The 33rd overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft played exclusively at left tackle during his time at Nevada but was projected by most as a guard in the NFL.

Jackson said the team evaluated Corbett as the next-best guard on the team in the wake of Bitonio's move.

"He gets to go in there and play left guard against the ones now, and he gets some reps," Bitonio said. "I kind of made that transition a little bit in college. I think it is definitely doable. Anything he needs to know, I can tell him. I have played left guard for a few years so I can kind of let him know what is going on."

-- The Browns didn't quite have what they envision as their starting offensive line in 2018 for the majority of Wednesday's practice. Right guard Kevin Zeitler left early with a calf injury, and Spencer Drango filled his spot.

-- LB Genard Avery (groin), TE Seth DeValve (quad), DL Daniel Ekuale (calf), OL Desmond Harrison (toe-PUP), WR Jeff Janis (knee), DL Lenny Jones (concussion) and OL Greg Robinson (concussion) did not practice.

-- The Browns put a heavy emphasis on game situations at Wednesday's practice, which was as heavy on 11-on-11 team action as any so far during training camp.

During one 2-minute drill period, the first-team offense got on the cusp of scoring but ultimately came up short. The second-team offense did not enter the red zone.

"We have to execute better. We have to make some throws and catches and protect, those things," Jackson said. "Whether it is before the half or at the end of the game, we have to be at our best. I am just glad that we got the process going. I want better execution from both sides of the ball, and I think that we will get there."

-- The Browns have used a number of different cornerbacks with the first-team defense, and Wednesday's practice was no different. Terrance Mitchell and E.J. Gaines, both of whom were signed as free agents, picked up some additional repetitions Wednesday.

The Browns resumed practice after a day off.

Related Content