BEREA (92.3 The Fan) – DeShone Kizer signed his 4-year rookie contract Wednesday.
That is the easy part.
The hardest – preparing to compete for the starting quarterback job when training camp opens at the end of July.
“I’m not in a position to even consider myself in a competition,” Kizer said Wednesday less than an hour before his signing was announced by the Browns. “But now after getting this base and getting the reps I’ve gotten the last couple weeks, I think that by the time training camp comes around and a little more over this month off, I’ll be ready to compete with these guys and see what I can do.”
On Tuesday all of Kizer’s reps on day 1 of minicamp came with the first-team offense as he shared them with Cody Kessler while Brock Osweiler spent his day with the second-team.
After being selected 52nd overall in the second round of the draft Kizer spoke about wanting to start as soon as possible, comments that he joked on Wednesday that he’s since had to walk back quickly, at the behest of head coach Hue Jackson.
“There’s so much that I have to learn,” Kizer said. “I’m still in the same position I was [a few weeks ago] and that’s just trying to put myself in position to compete one day. I don’t know if that day is now. It’s up to them to decide.”
Kizer, who is projected to have received nearly $5 million, including a $1.7 million signing bonus, has come to appreciate what it takes to be an NFL quarterback in the short time he’s spent on the field over the last 6 weeks in Berea.
“There’s a lot to learn,” Kizer said. “This offense is very intricate. This is a completely different level and to sit here and say that a month worth of learning that offense and being out here is enough to go and be a starter would be really naive of me.”
Kizer plans to spend the break between minicamp this week and training camp at the end of July working with quarterback guru Tom House in southern California to refine his mechanics and master Hue Jackson’s offense.
“There’s only so many days until game 1 this year and I think it’s obvious that the more time you spend on something the better you’re going to get,” Kizer said. “Right now my mindset is just all about learning and when it’s time to compete, and coach says ‘Hey look here’s the situation’ then I can go out there and change my mindset when the time comes.”
With the signing of Kizer, 8 of the 10-member class has been signed leaving first rounders Jabrill Peppers and David Njoku as the only 2 yet to put pen to paper on their rookie deals.
The Toledo Central Catholic alum started 23 of the 25 games he played at Notre Dame where he threw for 5,809 yards and 47 touchdowns. He also rushed for 992 yards and 18 TDs for the Fighting Irish.