Browns uncover 3 surprise O-Line prospects early in preseason

Browns, Deshaun Watson. [Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union]
Browns, Deshaun Watson. [Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union] /
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Browns, Brock Hoffman. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 3: Brock Hoffman wants to challenge for starting center

To reiterate, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with Pocic, who has started 40 games in the NFL for the Seattle Seahawks and performed credibly. Pro Football Focus considers him to be an average starting center, which is pretty good, especially as a Plan B option.

But what’s wrong with Brock Hoffman?

As mentioned above, he played half the game for the Browns and held up under fire. Hoffman is a 6-foot-3, 310-pound kid from Virginia Tech and put up decent numbers at his Pro Day.

According to the Va Tech website, his trophy case includes awards for All-ACC Honorable Mention, Wells Fargo Advisors Humanitarian of the Year, Wuerffel Trophy Semifinalist, Jason Witten Collegiate Man of the Year Semifinalist, Allstate AFCA Good Works Team Nominee and several others. That sounds pretty good, like the kind of guy the starting quarterback should hang around.

Hoffman began his career with Coastal Carolina and started at center and guard before transferring to Va Tech, which meant that he had to sit out a year. Thus he is a year older than most rookies at 23. A little extra maturity might help him make the team right now, though, in the long run, a younger player might have more growth potential.

However, his future might be now, because he’s getting the best instruction a lineman can possibly get with offensive line coach Bill Callahan. Callahan is one of the most respected line coaches in the business, and let us not forget that as head coach he once took his team to the Super Bowl.

Not only that, this summer he has been assisted by future Hall of Famer Joe Thomas. This has got to jump-start the careers of Hoffman and the other young linemen who are coming to the Browns camp for the first time.

The fact that Callahan and the other coaches saw fit to send him out there for half the offensive plays in the first exhibition games definitely means he’s a person of interest. The fact that he played very well means that he might have a shot at making this roster. Pro Football Focus liked Hoffman’s work versus the pass rush, but Pocic was apparently much better on running plays.

Another player we were not expecting to see much of was Hjalte Froholdt, the second greatest Danish football player of all time (the first was kicker Morten Anderson).