Training camp is officially underway in Berea, and although it won't include fans packed along the perimeter of the fields or the same schedule it's had in the past, we'll still have position battles and live football action to digest.
We're all excited to see players like Baker Mayfield, Myles Garrett, Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry back in a Browns uniform, but what about players fighting for a chance to wear the orange and brown in Week 1?
Over the next couple weeks, we'll highlight players who are poised to be in the battle for spots on the 53-man roster.
The Player: Stephen Carlson
Position: Tight End
Check out photos of the team working out Tuesday
Before 2020 training camp: The former undrafted rookie was with the Browns through all of 2019. He joined the practice squad Week 1 after his release at the end of the preseason and was elevated to the Browns' active roster midway through the year after a slew of injuries at the position. He made his biggest impact in Cleveland's Week 11, Thursday night victory over the Steelers when he caught a game-sealing touchdown — the first of his career — in the fourth quarter. He went on to appear in nine games, including five starts, and finished with five catches for 51 yards.
It's worth knowing that…: Carlson was used as a wide receiver at Princeton, where he graduated as one of the most productive pass-catchers in program history. He finished his career third all-time with 16 touchdown catches, eighth with 1,632 receiving yards and 10th with 125 catches. He added about 10 pounds to his frame by the time he entered the NFL and not only helped the Browns as a traditional tight end, but also on special teams. That'll be required as Carlson looks to find a niche on the 2020 Browns.
How does he fit? The Browns made one of the biggest moves of the offseason when they signed Austin Hooper to lead the tight ends room. There's also former first-round pick David Njoku and 2020 fourth-round pick Harrison Bryant in what promises to be a talented and highly used position group. It wouldn't be surprising to see a number of scenarios in which three tight ends are on the field at the same time. That means Carlson, along with the likes of Pharaoh Brown and Nate Wieting, will be fighting for a role in a room that goes very deep but promises to be highly important toward what the team wants to accomplish in 2020.