Browns RFA RB D’Ernest Johnson didn’t sign an offer sheet from another team this offseason and can now only negotiate with Cleveland and GM Andrew Berry.
“To be honest, my focus is really on the draft,” Berry said, via Nate Ulrich of The Akron Beacon-Journal. “We’ll deal with all those outstanding roster issues moving forward.“D’Ernest is a good player. We anticipate him being here and everything. We’ll handle that as we get to the weeks after the draft.”
Berry said that the team hasn’t ruled out trading back into the first round even though it seems unlikely at this point.
“It is unlikely, but I do not want to say anything in absolutes because you just never know how situations arise,” Berry said, via Scott Petrak of BrownsZone.com. “Quite honestly, I would not have expected us to move up last year. We have to be flexible with the situation. We have talked a lot about how important we think the quarterback position is and making sure that you have great performance at that spot for sustainable success and sustainable winning. Players at that spot and players at other premium spots, you will see us get creative for potentially acquiring.”
“There are always surprises every year,” Berry said. “That is the thing I have gained more patience with over my career because every year you go into the draft thinking it is going to play out in the worst-case scenario. I am not going to lie, sometimes it does. The reality of it is, if you polled everyone within our personnel, research, and coaching groups about the board, even though we all work together and have organizational priorities and preferences, a lot of those boards would look different if it is like, ‘Hey, OK. You are the one making the call.’ Now multiply that times 32 teams. As much as you think that you can project where players are going to go, and you may have a high degree of accuracy, there is just a lot of variance around it.”
- Aaron Wilson reports that Mississippi LB Mark Robinson has worked out for the Browns, spoken with the Chargers, and also visited with the Steelers.
Chiefs WR Mecole Hardman is entering the final year of his rookie contract and is hoping to have his best season yet.
“Yeah, definitely want to have one of my best seasons for sure, especially in the contract year,” Hardman said, via Chiefsdigest.com. “That’s definitely a thought that goes through your head.”
Chiefs HC Andy Reid expects Hardman to step up this season.
“I’d tell you in that situation, money talks, right,” Reid said. “They’re all in there going full speed. That’s what I’ve seen. I don’t have to talk about it, they know. These guys are well-educated, and they know what’s at stake. We’ve been fortunate that the guys have really been in attack mode when they get into those situations.”
The Colts stepped up last week to get CB Stephon Gilmore under contract for the next two seasons.
Gilmore explained that signing with the Colts “just felt right in my heart.”
“I think the Colts came in and I talked to the coaches and it just felt right,” Gilmore said Monday, via the Associated Press. “It was one of those things where it just felt right in my heart to come here, especially with the talent on the team. Watching them from afar last year, what they did and they were right there, I just wanted to come in and try to help the team get over that hump.”
Gilmore added that he can play where ever the Colts want him to line up.
“We have a lot of great players on the defensive side of the ball and with my skillset, I think I can play anything they want me to play,” Gilmore said. “I’m just looking forward to just getting better as an individual, working on my technique and playing the scheme the right way.“