TAMPA (AP) - Robert Griffin III doesn’t want to get ahead of himself.
The Cleveland Browns quarterback reiterated Wednesday that while he’s getting increasingly more comfortable running his new team’s offense, the transition is far from complete.
“It’s just about being consistent every day,” the fifth-year pro said after the Browns shared practice fields with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a second day.
“I don’t praise myself. Without the guys around me, I wouldn’t be able to do what I do,” the quarterback added. “Football is a beautiful game because it takes 11 guys, and when all 11 are on the same page, it’s a beautiful thing.”
Griffin is hardly expected to be a one-man show in Cleveland. He’s excited about the talent the Browns are assembling around him, including receivers Josh Gordon, Terrelle Pryor and Corey Coleman, who could wind up on the field together in a game for the first time in Friday night’s exhibition against the Bucs.
Gordon (quadriceps) and Coleman (hamstring) sat out the first two preseason games, but have returned to practice.
Griffin was asked whether he ever feels like he has an “embarrassment of riches” to work with considering the Browns also have productive targets such as tight end Gary Barnidge and running back Duke Johnson to throw to in coach Hue Jackson’s offense.
“No … you can’t look at it that way,” Griffin said. “You can’t try to force the ball to one guy, and that’s the beauty of it. We have a lot of guys that can do great things. You just have to give them opportunities, and they’ll make those plays for you. They understand that, as well. … There are a lot of fish in the tank, and it’s up to us to feed them the right way.”
Jackson, preparing for his first season in Cleveland, likes what he’s seen, adding Griffin is a “little ahead” of schedule in learning a new system.
The coach also feels his quarterback will benefit from having two extra days of work against Tampa Bay, which intercepted two of his passes on Tuesday.
Griffin was sharper Wednesday.
“He did a great job of just running the team, running our offense, understanding where the ball needs to go, when to get outside the pocket and throw the ball away, when to slide. I think all of it was on display,” Jackson said. “It has to be that way every day. That’s what he has to chase every day to be a really good player for us.”
“It’s a learning process,” Griffin said of his progress. “Every day you have to go in there and look at the reads and watch the tape and understand that reads change from team to team from week to week because of the coverages that they play or who you’re trying to attack or who we’re trying to get the ball to on a certain play. All those reads change week by week, day by day, honestly. You have to be light on your feet and ready to adjust.”
Browns center Cameron Erving left Wednesday’s practice with an ankle sprain that is not expected to keep the second-year pro from playing Friday night.
“He sprained it a little bit, so I just wanted to get him out of there so we have a chance to play him on Friday,” Jackson said. “I think he’ll be fine.”
Erving, a first-round draft pick in 2015, is replacing Pro Bowler Alex Mack, who left in free agency after last season.
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