Wide receiver Ricardo Louis was one of 14 draft picks to make the Cleveland Browns last season. However, Louis, a fourth-round pick out of Auburn, had some difficulty making the transition to the NFL and only managed 18 catches for 205 yards in his rookie campaign.
But with a year under his belt, the Browns and Louis feel like he’s better situated to contribute for the team this season.
“Now he lines up at the line of scrimmage and hears the play and sees the defense and recognizes the coverage, he goes 100 miles per hour,” wide receiver coach Al Saunders said, via Pat McManamon of ESPN.com. “He’s a talented young man. I’m thrilled he feels really comfortable in what he’s doing and am really excited when we get him to the preseason and take that transition and get into real physical football and play the game when things aren’t what you expect it to be.”
Head coach Hue Jackson echoed the sentiments, saying Louis has “really improved” since last season. Louis agreed that he’s taken a sizable step forward as well.
“There’s a lot of things that you have to be very specific on when it comes to being in the NFL,” Louis said. “You have to be detailed with everything you do as far as preparation and taking the next step.”
That 14-man class will have to be significant contributors eventually for the Browns to build toward contending status. A jump forward from year one to year two is typically expected from players moving into the pros. Louis appears situated to be a more trusted option in 2017.