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Around the Combine: Day One Review


INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – A look back at Day One of the NFL Scouting Combine media access at the Indiana Convention Center…

Browns open, cautious about first overall draft pick and large number of draft selections

The Cleveland Browns hold the top pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, and as it usually goes with teams holding the first overall selection, questions come about their openness to trading down on or before draft night.

"We're going to responsibly listen to any opportunities that are out there – we have to do that," Browns executive vice president of football operations Sashi Brown said. "We have to see what might come and what player might be available there (after trading down) as we get through this process."

When asked about one of the top players available in the 2017 draft class, Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett, as a prospect, Brown would not take the bait.

"Good player," he said with a smile.

After the No. 1 overall selection, the Browns hold 10 other selections in the 2017 NFL Draft, giving the organization options at the end of April, if not before.

"I think it provides us a lot of flexibility in terms of how we build the roster and (picks) could be packaged together to move up to get a player we covet and target - it could be acquiring a player from another roster," Brown said.

"Kind of our worst-case scenario – we have a bevy of young, talented players that we frankly need to build our foundation and move on towards winning."

Mariota continues recovery from fractured leg

Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota fractured his leg against the Jaguars late in the 2016 season, but there is still no true timetable for his return to the practice field.

"You have to trust the doctor's words and if you know Marcus like we do, we believe with the way he goes about business he'll be prepared," Titans Head Coach Mike Mularkey said. "He's not going to overdo it, he's been told be careful, be smart about it. Our number-one goal is to make sure he's under center opening day.

Mularkey said that Mariota is walking in a boot, but would not put a timetable on his return to the practice field.

"I'm not going to put a timeframe on when that first practice… I can't do that, because every player is different in how they recover. It's a difficult thing to do."

John Harbaugh plans on Mike Wallace staying with Ravens

The Baltimore Ravens have a decision to make on wide receiver Mike Wallace before the start of the NFL League Year March 9. If the Ravens take the option, reports have the salary cap hit more than doubling from last year, up to $8 million.

For Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh, Wallace has everything a coach could ask for. 

"Mike Wallace to me was a big, integral part of our team last year," Harbaugh said. "Mike Wallace is a top-flight competitor. Mike Wallace is a guy who has a chip on his shoulder…that's what you love about him. He wants to compete, he wants to be great and he works that way. So, I want Mike Wallace on our football team."

The internal business dealings surrounding keeping Wallace on the Ravens' roster are inevitable, but Harbaugh's focus is simple.

"Circumstances, contracts, salary caps, all that are another conversation you have about every single guy. My anticipation is that Mike Wallace will be a part of our team and I know he's working to be a part of our team, and I'm planning on having him back next year."

Shanahan reflects on Super Bowl play-calling

For the first time as the San Francisco 49ers' head coach, Kyle Shanahan met the media at the Combine Wednesday.

That did not mean he could shake questions surrounding his play-calling as offensive coordinator of the Atlanta Falcons in their loss to the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LI last month.

"The Super Bowl was a great experience; I know it didn't work out like we wanted," Shanahan said.

"Every time it ends that way you're going to second-guess everything that you do. I'm proud of what we did, why we did the things we did. One thing I learned from it, I hope the opportunity comes again because it's a fun thing to be a part of and makes you realize how special it is to get a win there."

As for play calling on the Falcons' final possession, Shanahan regrets only result, not the process.

"Anytime a play doesn't work, (you say) 'Dang I wish I called what works,'" Shanahan said.

"The reasons for calling those – why we did that, what we were thinking – I don't' second guess at all."

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