Red Right 88

In Cleveland, hope dies last

That’s a lot of beef

First-round draft pick Phil Taylor was finally on the practice field for the Browns on Thursday.

“I feel great just to be out there with the guys practicing and learning a new defense,” Taylor said in published reports. “I’ve played in the 4-3 my whole college career. So it’s not that hard.”

When Taylor (338 pounds) lines up next to Ahtyba Rubin (315 lbs.) at the tackle positions in the Browns new 4-3 defense, that’s a combined 653 lbs. waiting to rip into opposing quarterbacks.

“(We’re) two big, beefy guys in the middle just focused on stuffing (the) run and at the same time trying to get to the passer,” Rubin told The Beacon Journal. “I believe Phil’s a pretty good pass rusher, and we’ve just gotta wait and see what happens. I’m excited.”

“We can be a good tandem here,” Taylor told The Plain Dealer. “We can be real good. With this AFC North, there’s a lot of good teams who know how to run the ball. You’ve got to anchor down and stop the run.”

Somewhere in a dorm room in Latrobe, Pa., Ben Rothlisberger just soiled himself at the thought of that.

***

Sirius NFL Radio was at Browns training camp today, which is always a good time.

While we didn’t get to hear as much as we would have liked, we did catch the interview with rookie tight end Jordan Cameron.

Hosts Tim Ryan and Pat Kirwan were very complimentary of Cameron, talking about his route running and ability to gain separation from his defender.

Because Ben Watson has been sidelined this week with a concussion, and Evan Moore was not eligible to practice until Thursday because of the new NFL labor rules, Cameron has been thrown into the mix.

While he’s certainly not going to be a starter on Opening Day, but those additional reps that he gained this week will only help down the road.

***

Team president Mike Holmgren was also on the show and talked about the squad’s running backs.

He said he’s confident the team will be able to run the ball with the trio of Peyton Hillis, Brandon Jackson and Montario Hardesty, but that the team also needs rookie fullback Owen Marecic to lead the way on the ground

Holmgren said he expects Marecic to be up to the challenge and he better be right. Letting Lawrence Vickers go in free agency was one of the biggest gambles the team made in the off-season, and if Marecic can’t blow up linebackers the ground game is not going anywhere.

(Photo by The Plain Dealer)

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