Browns' Winslow debuts at camp

After signing 6-year deal, tight end looks to add spark to team's offense

August 12, 2004|By Ken Murray | Ken Murray,SUN STAFF

BEREA, Ohio - The Cleveland Browns' retooled offense gained some clout yesterday when precocious tight end Kellen Winslow finally arrived in training camp off a 12-day, 15-practice holdout.

Like Jeremy Shockey did with the New York Giants two years ago, Winslow is expected to elevate all phases of the Browns' attack. That anticipation was evident as teammates welcomed him with open arms.

"I'm glad to see him in here," running back Lee Suggs said. "He had to take care of some business; everybody understands that. I'm glad he's in here because he's really going to help us a lot."

The first order of business for Winslow, a 6-foot-5, 250-pound playmaker, was signing a six-year, $28 million contract that can grow to $40 million with incentives. The deal includes a $10.8 million signing bonus.

According to The Plain Dealer in Cleveland, the Browns broke the stalemate by raising their offer of guaranteed money from $13.045 million to $16.5 million and the low end of the deal from $18 million to $28 million.

"I just wanted to get my fair market value," said Winslow, 21, the son of a Hall of Fame tight end of the same name. "I was the sixth pick, but I was in an elite group."

Although it's questionable whether the former Miami Hurricane will play in Saturday night's preseason opener against the Tennessee Titans, he will have a full month to prepare for his regular-season debut on Sept. 12 at home against the Ravens.

"I am very far behind," he said after his first practice with the team. "My head is spinning. I have a lot to learn."

In addition to Winslow, the Browns' offense has added a mobile quarterback in Jeff Garcia and a punishing fullback in Terrelle Smith since finishing 5-11 last year.

"Physically, he knows how to run routes, he knows how to catch the ball, and he knows how to get open," Garcia said. "To understand what we are doing offensively, that is going to be his main concern.

"[But] I have no doubt that he will be able to catch up quickly."

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.