BEREA (92.3 The Fan) – After each camp practice, rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer returns to the field where he runs goal line to goal line several times before grabbing a football and running through his own pre-snap simulations of calls and protections.
If there’s a teammate around he’ll throw a few extra passes too.
While that little bit of extra work doesn’t seem like much of a big deal, it’s a little thing that isn’t going unnoticed and earning Kizer respect and praise.
“He’s grown each day,” veteran receiver Kenny Britt said Sunday prior to the fourth practice of camp. “From OTAs I can tell [he’s] a different person. I actually asked him [Saturday], ‘Has the offense slowed down?’ and he said, ‘Yes.’ I can tell he’s looking at certain things, he’s seeing the defense before the snap count and once he lines up he knows there’s certain things he has to do.
“He’s going to be one of the great ones.”
Britt has seen Kizer’s improvement and evolution in less than 3 months since the Browns selected the Notre Dame QB 52nd overall in the draft back in April.
You can’t judge Kizer’s growth simply by his camp completion percentage, which actually trails the 3 other QBs on the roster. Unofficially, Kizer has completed 55 percent of his passes compared to 65 percent for Cody Kessler, 63 percent for Kevin Hogan and 62 percent for Brock Osweiler through 3 practices in team 11-on-11 work.
Kizer’s throws have been sharp, he’s been the victim of a few drops and he doesn’t show the happy feet and dance around in the pocket like you tend to see from rookie quarterbacks.
But it all comes back to Kizer’s work ethic.
“If he continues to focus on the track that he’s on to tell you the truth, he could be one of the great ones,” Britt said. “He’s learning fast and he’s got a strong arm.”
It’s far too early to anoint Kizer as the starter for the season, let alone the franchise QB or even ‘great,’ but the potential is there according to Britt.