Cleveland Browns 5 questions to answer in Preseason Week 2
5. Can Chad Thomas and Austin Corbett build on strong starts?
General manager John Dorsey received a lot of praise for his work in the 2018 NFL Draft and it was all well-deserved. He hit on picks such as Baker Mayfield, Nick Chubb, and Genard Avery — Antonio Callaway was another one that looks good but needs to stay out of trouble.
With all that being said, there were a couple of picks in there that looked questionable heading into this season. One was offensive lineman Austin Corbett, who was taken 33rd overall out of Nevada. The other was their following pick, which was the 67th overall selection used on Miami defensive end Chad Thomas.
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Neither player was able to do much as a rookie as Corbett was used primarily on special teams. The Browns had tried him out at left guard with the starters in the preseason while moving Joel Bitonio to tackle. That didn’t work out and Corbett was sent to the bench while Bitonio returned to his natural spot. As for Thomas, he got into four games but recorded no statistics. He dealt with a groin injury early in the year and never got rolling.
Following their frustrating rookie season, both Thomas and Corbett received votes of confidence from Dorsey and showed in Week 1 why he believes in them. Corbett got time as the second-string center and held up well in this role whereas Thomas had a solid night playing on the edge with the Browns reserves.
Thomas finished with just one tackle but he provided a couple of pressures and just looked much more comfortable in his second campaign. Corbett, who proved he may have a career at center, also looked much better this season than last. The question is whether or not they can keep building on that positive momentum.