BEREA, OH - The injury to Phil Taylor will set the team back a little but with the addition of free agent Frosty Rucker and the improving play of young Jabaal Sheard along with speedy young linebacker James-Michael Johnson add in a healthy Joe Haden and T.J. Ward and this team is ready to take a big step forward this season.
Joe Haden likes what he has seen so far " We have a whole bunch of talent, we have all the pieces". Haden said the defense can and will get better but must eliminate mental mistakes. "We can't take plays off, we would go three and out and three and out, then brain fart and give up a big play"
Comments echoed by linebacker Scott Fujita "We have to finish games better and make big plays in the fourth quarter, for us we were always in position to win games we just didn't make the plays"
There is a big emphasis here in camp at the end of plays the defensive players will try to strip or punch the ball loose from the receivers and running backs
T.J. Ward said "Having OTA's this year we came in here rolling instead of trying to come in here and learn, we are just trying to perfect things and put the fine tuning on everything and now we are a little more comfortable with it"
Having an off season and training camp will only help the Browns good young defense get better. Health as it always is will be a major issue. it's no secret the team is thinest at linebacker and with Scott Fujita suspended for the first three games of the season for his roll in "Bountygate" young players like James-Michael Johnson are being slowly worked into the defense.
Pat Shurmur said today "We know we are going to lose Scott for the first three games so we have already decided on a plan though it may not be obvious the way we are rotating the linebackers in there thats getting done already.
The Browns defense may have flown under the radar last year and because of the teams record didn't get enough credit for how well they really played but with a good off season and training camp under their belts that sky is the limit for the orange helmets this year.
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