Signed as an unrestricted free agent final 12 months, Anthony Walker began 12 of 13 video games for the Cleveland Browns final season, taking part in over 700 defensive snaps within the course of. It’s honest to say that the sixth-year linebacker received loads of time in together with his teammates throughout that point.
Now going into 12 months two in Cleveland after spending his first 4 seasons with the Indianapolis Colts, nonetheless, he’s sensing a a lot completely different locker room, one which he believes is extra attributable to constructing a profitable tradition which, evidently no less than from his perspective, they lacked in 2021.
“Last year it was a little standoffish and this is professional football, so I get it”, he lately informed reporters, through Cleveland.com. “But to be a great team you’ve got to have that camaraderie, you’ve got to have that team mindset because when you go through the dark days, sometimes you may lose or the dog days of camp, the dog days of this grind and minicamp and everything like that, you need that team brotherhood, that team bond to keep bringing you together, and I’m glad that we’re building that”.
He stated that they’d that tradition whereas he was with the Colts, though they solely posted two profitable data throughout his 4 years there, and now he’s starting to see steps taken that may carry that tradition to Cleveland.
“When I came here, it was a little different”, he stated, contrasting his expertise with the completely different locker rooms. “I’m starting to feel what I felt in Indy when I was there. Just the brotherhood that we had, all the guys coming together, the team camaraderie”.
There have been, in fact, contentious points, corresponding to that between broad receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and quarterback Baker Mayfield—and that between Mayfield and the workforce, apparently, which stays ongoing. Nobody was shocked when Mayfield was excused from attending necessary minicamp, I think about.
Walker did say that he feels COVID-19 and the restrictions concerned did contribute to his sense of the roster final 12 months, and to be honest, the Browns’ roster has relied extra upon newer draft picks, free brokers, and commerce acquisitions, so there may be much less gathered time with the gamers collectively than he had in Indianapolis. He himself was a type of signings.
This 12 months, everyone—besides Mayfield—appears to be on the identical web page, even because it considerations their new franchise quarterback, Deshaun Watson, about whom solely optimistic issues have been spoken at the same time as he faces greater than two dozen (and counting) lawsuits. But will it keep that approach? Winning would assist maintain that environment.