Cleveland Browns Coach Freddie Kitchens: The defense will be ‘the strength of this team’

Cleveland Browns Coach Freddie Kitchens: The defense will be ‘the strength of this team’
Cleveland Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens directs a drill during an NFL football organized team activity session at the team's training facility Wednesday, May 22, 2019, in Berea, Ohio. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane) (Source: Ron Schwane)

CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - There is one issue with having OBJ in a Browns uniform ... who’s gonna cover him in practice?

Whoever it is, they’ll be better for it in the long run.

“That’s the old motto, right? ‘Competition makes you better,’ and we have that on both sides of the ball,” head coach Freddie Kitchens said.

No doubt, but only one side of the ball seems to be getting all the hype. And yet, when you add up John Dorsey’s biggest deals, you can’t overlook Sheldon Richardson...and Olivier Vernon ... who they added to complement Myles Garrett and Larry Ogunjobi. That’s a pretty formidable front four.

“To a man, you can ask them, I want our defensive line to be the strength of our football team,” Kitchens said.

It must be.

A year ago, the Browns were among the worst in the league at stopping the run, because they were among the worst in the league in one key area.

Tackling. Sounds simple. But it wasn’t, not here anyway. So, how do you change that?

“Just run to the football,” safety Damarious Randall said. “Good things happen when you run to the football.”

Dorsey tried to amp it up even more, making a run at Gerald McCoy, who chose the Panthers instead.

No problem.

“If he would have came, it would have helped us,” Richardson said. “But I like our potential already, and if he would have came, he wouldn’t have taken my spot.”

Garrett was another who WASN’T lobbying for McCoy.

He believes they’re just fine without him. IF they tap into one thing.

“Consistency,” Garrett said. “There were some games we looked pretty good against some elite competition, and sometimes we were all over the place. We need to stop people, and keep them off the board.”

And in between shutting down the other teams, they’ll sharpen their skills by challenging each other. Which brings me back to OBJ, and the impact he’s already having.

“I see Baker smiling at Odell, and Odell smiling back," linebacker and captain Christian Kirksey said. “And of course Jarvis. They’re getting that chemistry, reaching a different energy, and others want to match that.”

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