2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Browns begin offseason program

By TOM WITHERS - AP Sports Writer
    2012-04-16 17:09

CLEVELAND (AP) - As they prepare to pick new players in the NFL draft, the current Browns huddled up to begin fixing all that went wrong last season.

Four months after their tumultuous 2011 season ended with a loss to Pittsburgh, Cleveland's players began a ``voluntary'' offseason program on Monday under second-year coach Pat Shurmur, who didn't have the luxury of such preparation in his first year because of the NFL lockout

Shurmur was pleased with the ``outstanding'' turnout of a team he now knows much better.

Shurmur said he and the Browns are eager to work.

``From what I saw, the players are looking forward to going over and revisiting the things we did well last year and making improvements on the things that we didn't do well,'' he said during a teleconference. ``For me, I just have a much better view of what our team is and the areas we need to improve in to get ourselves in a position to play in the playoffs and compete to play in the big game.''

Shurmur said during the first phase of his 10-week program that players will spend much of the first two weeks lifting weights and will have limited contact with coaches, who must abide by new rules agreed upon in the collective bargaining agreement.

Shurmur ducked any questions about the April 26-28 draft, where the Browns own the No. 4 overall pick have three of the first 37 selections and could go in any number of directions to help a team that went just 4-12 last season.

There are conflicting reports of the team's interest in Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill, who has jetted up many draft boards. What is known is that the Browns failed in their effort to trade up and get Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III, who is expected to be picked second by Washington.

Cleveland's pursuit indicated doubt about incumbent starter Colt McCoy, who missed the final three games last season with a concussion and was inconsistent in many of his 13 starts.

Shurmur said he spoke with McCoy but didn't discuss the team's offseason interest in another QB.

``I didn't think that was necessary,'' Shurmur said. ``We just kind of greeted each other and we started talking about really what we want to get accomplished in the offseason more than any other business.''

Shurmur confirmed that veteran linebacker Scott Fujita was not with the team but in New York meeting commissioner Roger Goodell and league officials in their ongoing investigation of the New Orleans Saints ``bounty'' program. Fujita, who is on the NFLPA's executive council, played for the Saints from 2006-2009. He has previously admitted to paying teammates to make big plays but not to hurt an opponent.

Fujita is facing possible discipline from Goodell, who suspended Saints coach Sean Payton for the 2012 season and general manager Mickey Loomis for eight games.

Shurmur said he heard the disturbing audiotape of former Saints defensive Gregg Williams encouraging players to injure San Francisco players in a playoff game last season. Shurmur wouldn't comment on the tape, saying ``that's a league issue.'' Shurmur said he values player safety and the integrity of the game. He will talk to his players about what happened in New Orleans to ensure it won't happen again.

``As coaches we want to make sure that we do things that right way and of course this will be a point of emphasis,'' he said.

Shurmur shared that he had one main message to his players as they began preparing for a new season.

``Everybody needs to improve,'' he said. ``Whether you are (left tackle) Joe Thomas, who went to the Pro Bowl, or a first year player a year ago. We all need to improve to get where we need to be. I'm actually looking for improvement from everyone. For the older guys, it's more familiarity with the system. For the younger guys, it's obviously development beyond that as they become professionals.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

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Oakland Raiders TE David Ausberry (foot), WR Vincent Brown (hamstring), CB Chimdi Chekwa (hamstring), CB Keith McGill (groin) and CB Carlos Rogers (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. [ More ]

Bobby WagnerOct 29 09:23p

Seattle Seahawks TE Zach Miller (ankle) and LB Bobby Wagner (toe) were each unable to practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and each is already ruled out for Week 9 against the Oakland Raiders.

Max UngerOct 29 09:23p

Seattle Seahawks DT Jordan Hill (ankle), SS Jeron Johnson (concussion), CB Byron Maxwell (calf) and LB Malcolm Smith (non-injury related) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. OG James Carpenter [ More ]

J. CunninghamOct 29 08:53p

The St. Louis Rams signed OT Steven Baker, WR Emory Blake, OT Travis Bond and TE Justice Cunningham to the practice squad Wednesday, Oct. 29.

Marcus LattimoreOct 29 08:53p

San Francisco 49ers RB Marcus Lattimore (knee) returned to practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. He remains on the reserve/non-football injury list.

Brian QuickOct 29 08:43p

The St. Louis Rams placed WR Brian Quick (shoulder) on the reserve/injured list Wednesday, Oct. 29.

A.J. EddsOct 29 08:33p

Atlanta Falcons FS Sean Baker, Carolina Panthers RB Darrin Reaves, Denver Broncos DE Greg Latta, New England Patriots OG Chris Barker, New York Jets LB A.J. Edds, Oakland Raiders [ More ]

Damian WilliamsOct 29 08:33p

The St. Louis Rams promoted OG Brandon Washington from the practice squad to the active roster Wednesday, Oct. 29, and they signed free-agent WR Damian Williams.

Patrick WillisOct 29 08:03p

San Francisco 49ers CB Tramaine Brock (toe), SS Jimmie Ward (quadriceps) and LB Patrick Willis (toe) were listed as limited participants in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. CB Chris Culliver [ More ]

Ronnie HillmanOct 29 08:03p

Denver Broncos RB Ronnie Hillman (shoulder) was limited in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29.

Anthony CollinsOct 29 07:53p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers OT Anthony Collins (foot) and LB Brandon Magee (knee) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. C Evan Dietrich-Smith (knee) and DE Michael Johnson (hand) were listed as limited participants.

Lamarcus JoynerOct 29 07:53p

St. Louis Rams S Cody Davis (concussion), DT Aaron Donald (shoulder), LB Jo-Lonn Dunbar (toe), DE William Hayes (foot), CB Janoris Jenkins (knee), S Rodney McLeod (knee), OT Rodger [ More ]

Billy WinnOct 29 07:43p

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A.J. GreenOct 29 07:33p

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Johnathan JosephOct 29 07:33p

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Stepfan TaylorOct 29 07:33p

Arizona Cardinals RB Stepfan Taylor (calf) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and he has been ruled out for Week 9.

Patrick PetersonOct 29 07:33p

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Brandon ThompsonOct 29 07:23p

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Louis VasquezOct 29 07:03p

Denver Broncos LB Lamin Barrow (concussion), S Quinton Carter (hamstring) and OG Louis Vasquez (illness) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. CB Omar Bolden (concussion) and LB Steven Johnson [ More ]

Mike PounceyOct 29 06:53p

Miami Dolphins OG Daryn Colledge (illness) and TE Dion Sims (toe) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. OG Nate Garner (neck), LB Chris McCain (foot), LB Koa Misi (ankle), [ More ]

Brian RobinsonOct 29 06:43p

Minnesota Vikings DE Brian Robinson (glute) and CB Jabari Price (hamstring) both did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. CB Josh Robinson (ankle), DT Sharrif Floyd (ankle, knee), [ More ]

Cyrus GrayOct 29 06:23p

Kansas City Chiefs WR Donnie Avery (groin) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and has been ruled out for the team's Week 9 game. CB Jamell Fleming [ More ]

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Tracy PorterOct 29 05:53p

Washington Redskins S Ryan Clark (ankle, shoulder) and OT Trent Williams (knee) were limited in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. LB Ryan Kerrigan (wrist), LB Trent Murphy (knee), CB Tracy [ More ]

Jon BeasonOct 29 05:33p

New York Giants LB Jon Beason (foot, toe) was placed on the Reserve/Injured list Wednesday, Oct. 29.

Jonathan GoodwinOct 29 05:23p

New Orleans Saints LB David Hawthorne (hand) and FB Austin Johnson (knee) both did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and have been ruled out for the team's Week 9 [ More ]

Pierre ThomasOct 29 05:23p

New Orleans Saints RB Pierre Thomas (rib, shoulder) did not practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and has been ruled out for Week 9.

Jimmy GrahamOct 29 05:23p

New Orleans Saints TE Jimmy Graham (shoulder) was limited in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29, and is questionable for the team's Week 9 game.

Brandon BrownerOct 29 05:03p

New England Patriots DE Chandler Jones (hip) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. FS Nate Ebner (finger), DE Dominique Easley (knee, shoulder), OT Cameron Fleming (finger) and [ More ]

Demario DavisOct 29 05:03p

New York Jets CB Darrin Walls (calf, knee) didn't practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. OG Oday Aboushi (shoulder), OG Willie Colon (knee), LB David Harris (shoulder), LG Trevor Reilly (knee) [ More ]

Terrell SuggsOct 29 04:53p

Baltimore Ravens WR Michael Campanaro (thigh), DT Haloti Ngata (shin), CB Jimmy Smith (foot), LB Terrell Suggs (neck), CB Lardarius Webb (non-injury) and OG Marshal Yanda (knee) all did [ More ]

Justin ForsettOct 29 04:53p

Baltimore Ravens RB Justin Forsett (ankle) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Oct. 29. Forsett is dealing with an ankle injury.

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