Learn and listen: Browns rookies reflect on draft process, offer advice for 2017 class
April 24, 2017 05:33 PM | Patrick Maks
This time last year, Corey Coleman was preparing to hear his named called at the NFL Draft in Chicago. The Browns wide receiver and 2016 first-round pick described it back then as a whirlwind of sorts. It's why Coleman can empathize with what this year's top prospects are feeling as this the 2017 Draft in Philadelphia fast approaches.

"I just like all that type of stuff and I was there a year ago," Coleman said last week as the team opened offseason workouts. "It's like crazy what these guys (go through) that are about to be drafted."

Coleman, the former Baylor standout and Dallas native, knows that dynamic well -- from landing in a potentially unfamiliar city, rookie minicamp, organized team activities and mastering the ins and outs of a new playbook.

And starting on Thursday night, the Browns are set to add 11 new faces to an already youth-laden roster. Cleveland, which drafted a record 14 players last year, owns the first and 12th overall picks, and five of the top 65 selections.

In a few days, Coleman will be something of a veteran on the league's youngest team. As he reflected on a rookie season of highs and lows, he was asked to offer some advice for this year's draft class - no matter whom the Browns take later this week.

"Listen to the coaches and just try to learn as much as you can," Coleman said. "With me, I had to learn so much so fast. For a receiver, it kind of slows you down."

Coleman, who missed six games with a broken hand, caught 33 passes for 413 yards and three touchdowns in 2016.

"You don't get to play as fast as you want because you are thinking," Coleman said, "and then you're kind of nervous because you don't want to mess up instead of just going out there and playing football."

Browns second-year quarterback Cody Kessler, a third-round pick from USC who started eight games last season, offered a few tips when it comes to tuning out some of the pre-draft hoopla.

"When you try to get an idea (of where you'll get drafted) and try to think, you really start overthinking it and all these different possibilities," he said last week.

"Being with my family and friends and kind of just ignoring the whole situation, just working out or going and blocking the whole draft, everything out until the day actually came. I feel like that helped me out a lot more was instead of trying to overthink where I might go, where I might end up just kind of worrying about getting ready to go and working out."

In any case, this year's draft is poised to be a pivotal one for a Browns team looking to add a "generational" type of player at No. 1 and plenty of other high-caliber players. And trust that it's an exciting time for all involved. Just ask Coleman.

"My eyes were so open, just like man, Ijust got drafted to the NFL," he said, smiling. "So I'm excited for those guys and I'm excited to see who we pick."

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