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July 30, 2012 - Mike McLain
BEREA -- It was another physical day of practice Monday for the Browns, who mixed in the two-minute drill with some pad-cracking goal-line plays.
The best hit on goal-line drills was a collision between rookie linebacker James-Michael Johnson and running back Brandon Jackson. It was the start of a positive day on the field for Johnson, a fourth-round draft choice from the University of Nevada. He intercepted a Brandon Weeden pass that was tipped by Jabaal Sheard, and he later intercepted Seneca Wallace in a two-minute possession.
Johnson is working several positions but has spent most of the time at middle linebacker.
It's important that seomeone steps up on the outside. Scott Fujita will miss the first three games because of his reported role in the Saints' bounty-gate scandal. Plus, Fujita can't be depended on to finish the season healthy (he finished each of the last two years on injured reserve).
Weeden looked decent in two-minute action. He moved the first-team offense into field-goal range, including a completion to rookie receiver Josh Gordon on a deep out route.
Gordon continues to show up strong each day. It's not a reach to say he's been the most impressive rookie to date. He did have a drop going high for a Weeden throw on a post route.
One of the best matchups to watch is between rookie offensive right tackle Mitchell Schwartz and Sheard, a second-year defensive end. Sheard's outstanding quickness is a good way for Schwartz to break into the NFL.
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