The Browns wrapped up their final day of practice before the third preseason game inside the field house because of torrential rain. While it was business as usual on the field, head coach Mike Pettine had some interesting things to say afterwards.
-Pettine revealed that the starters will play at least a half on Saturday against St. Louis and will also play in the final preseason game against Chicago. Many coaches do not play their starters in the final preseason game but obviously the Browns need the reps.
-Pettine also said that the wide receiver position is still wide open and the next two games will be important. Nate Burleson still hasn’t gotten back on the field and Pettine called him day-to-day. He also praised Taylor Gabriel, an undrafted free agent, for his progress during camp.
-Pettine said that the starting lineman will remain the same heading into the season. That means that rookie Joel Bitonio will start on the left side at guard and veteran John Greco will start on the right.
-Both center Alex Mack and tackle Joe Thomas praised rookie Joel Bitonio for his play thus far. Thomas added that he still has a long way to go because his ceiling is so very high. That is high praise form a guy like Thomas.
-Both Mack and Thomas also agreed it is good that Pettine named a starting quarterback now because the offense needs consistency and reps with one particular person behind center.
-Pettine shed some light on the amount of reps Johnny Manziel got in practice since the announcement. He said out of eight play sets, Manziel would take three with the second team offense and split some reps with the scout team as well.