For all of the times that the Browns offensive line made fans want to pull out their collective hair thanks to false starts or unnecessary holds, one thing that we cannot take away from them – at least as of today – is their ability to take advantage of opportunities.
In his latest press conference, head coach Eric Mangini discussed a recent wager than he placed with his team that would allow them to finish up minicamp one session early.
Today we finished up minicamp here this morning. We had another segment planned for this evening, but the deal with that was, if we went out and had an excellent practice, they’d get three chances to get the next practice removed. If it was above average it would be two, and if it was okay, give them one, depending. They got two chances and they nailed it on the first. It was going to be an O-lineman catching a punt and then a D-lineman catching a kickoff.
The first one you probably saw was a warm-up to give Rex (Hadnot) a chance to really assess where the ball was going to go and make his adjustments accordingly. He nailed the second one. I talked to them about that this morning. That’s really how it is always going to be, you have to create opportunities for yourself to be successful. When those opportunities come up, you have to be able execute on the opportunity. They are not always going to show up in a conventional fashion, just like it wasn’t this morning.
Arguably, there is a method to the madness. Later in the press conference, Mangini mentioned that the team got to choose who would be the lineman that would field the punt. He then took advantage of his own opportunities by laying down a little comedy by commending Hadnot’s versatility and discussing the run after the catch.
The OBR came through with a pretty entertaining quote by Hadnot himself. “I had never caught a punt before in my life, and I don’t plan on catching another one. Even when you play Play Station, they do it (catch punts) for you there.”
I’m willing to be that Hadnot doesn’t rack up a lot of “user tackles” when he plays…
From here, the team will take about a month off with training camp reporting day being July 31st. It will likely be this stretch of practice where Hadnot finds out if he still has a starting gig or not. The team has added a lot of depth to the O-Line this season, so the final result remains to be seen.