Cleveland Browns OTAs Wind Down: A Look at Colt McCoy and Holdouts

Brian DiTullioSenior Writer IJune 8, 2010

CLEVELAND - JANUARY 03:  Jerome Harrison #35 of the Cleveland Browns runs by Derrick Harvey #91 of the Jacksonville Jaguars at Cleveland Browns Stadium on January 3, 2010 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns mandatory minicamp opens this weekend, and the only signed player to boycott the practices was kicker Phil Dawson.

Dawson has told the front office he wants to renew his contract, and to his credit, he's been one of the best cold-weather kickers in the league.

However, management seems to have taken the position that kickers easily are replaceable, and signed Shaun Swisham to kick during OTAs.

Swisham missed four kicks, three to the right and one short, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

It's doubtful Dawson will boycott the mandatory minicamp, he didn't last year while requesting a new contract, and he'll have plenty of opportunity there to plead his case.

Jerome Harrison and Lawrence Vickers ended their holdouts despite not signing new contracts, but don't think that was for any reason other than money.

Harrison had a great run at the end of the season, but he is finally realizing that's not enough for the coaching staff to give him the keys to the kingdom.

Both Harrison and Vickers realize they stand to lose a lot of money if they don't sign by June 15, and showing up to the OTAs is a goodwill gesture on their part to get better contracts than they were tendered.

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Ultimately, though, the power is in the hands of GM Tom Heckert, and the truth is the second-round tenders they were offered in March are more than fair.

Still absent are Abram Elam, D'Qwell Jackson, and Matt Roth. Their refusal to sign their respective tenders is baffling because Roth was waived by the Dolphins last year, Elam didn't have a good year, and Jackson was adequate in his play before being injured.

These guys should be happy they were offered Second Round tenders, but instead they are barking for more money.

Also in camp, but not signed, are all the rookies. More specifically, Colt McCoy. McCoy has said and done all the right things, and that's encouraging for several reasons, but mostly because there hasn't been any bad news to report.

Montario Hardesty, T.J. Ward, and the rest of the draftees have been doing their work and only are being mentioned for positive, on-field actions.

The mandatory mini-camp starts this weekend, and the intensity will go up. It's summertime and optimism is running high in Cleveland.