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Kwaku Danso and Clifton Geathers


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http://www.cleveland.com/browns/index.ssf/...thers_dans.html

 

BEREA, Ohio -- At the conclusion of a recent, long Browns minicamp practice, Kwaku Danso and Clifton Geathers peeled themselves from the field and walked off side-by-side, Danso carrying both players' helmets even though both are rookies.

 

They are the burgeoning twin towers of the defensive line, giant men who stand out because of their imposing size. They come from radically different backgrounds and have bonded in the common pursuit of making the Browns' final roster.

 

Weathers, 6-7 and 300 pounds, comes from a football family from Georgetown, S.C. His uncle had a 13-year NFL career, his father was a Buffalo draft choice and his brother, Robert, currently plays for the Cincinnati Bengals. The Browns selected Geathers in the sixth round in April.

 

Danso, 6-5 and 336, was born in Ghana, a small country in West Africa. He came to the United States in 2002 at age 20. He didn't play football until 26 and, as it happened, got on the field for only three plays in his short career at East Carolina.

 

"I was working two jobs and I didn't have too much time for football," Danso explained in broken but well-spoken English. "It got to the point where I didn't go to practice all the time. I was working at Lowe's Home Improvement and as a bouncer downtown."

 

Danso was invited to rookie camp on a tryout basis. He aced that to make it to full team minicamp and is now awaiting word on whether he will be one of the 80 players coach Eric Mangini takes to training camp in late July.

 

"I'd say that he's made a really good case for himself," Mangini said.

 

Which is rather remarkable considering Danso's background and age. He is being groomed at nose tackle in the Browns' 3-4 defensive front.

 

There is an upside to Danso' limited exposure to football. The somewhat passive, read-and-react nature of the Browns' scheme, particularly for the nose, might not be as difficult a transition for Danso as it would be for a college end used to shooting one gap to the quarterback.

 

"I love playing the 3-4 defense," Danso said. "I think it's real fun. You just play the center, in front of him, all the time. As long as you don't get pushed away, you should be fine."

 

Danso is a sponge when it comes to learning. "Knowledge is power," he likes to say, and he has excelled in the classroom portion of his job.

 

"He didn't come with a lot of experience, he came with a lot of size, which is good," Mangini said. "He's bright. That time period that we had between the rookies' first reporting and when they came back, he did a ton of work studying. You can ask him pretty much any question and he knows it. Now, going out and executing it with the calls, that's a work in progress. I like his size, I like his intelligence and I like the way he works, so it's encouraging."

 

Danso disputes that he's made it this far on size alone, however.

 

"What got me in was my hard working," he said. "I work hard every day and I prove myself every day. If it was [my size], I would not be here because they still send people home every day.

 

"I take coaching. I study a lot because knowledge is power. I come out here and show them what they tell me in the meeting rooms. I prove it to them on the field and I do my job."

 

Danso said he has learned more about football in six weeks with the Browns than he learned in his whole life.

 

Geathers, too, is learning a lot. On a conference call the day he was drafted, Geathers spoke of being "the next Julius [Peppers] ... the best player, probably, in the league" if he could harness his physical talents. He didn't sound boastful, just matter of fact.

 

But he has toned down his comments since arriving and has at least twice received some personal tutoring after occurrences on the field.

 

At rookie camp, he waylaid a free agent punter to the ground running down on a kickoff drill. And last week he was admonished for getting in a fight with a teammate after losing his cool.

 

"I'm taking one day at a time," Geathers said. "Just trying to get better each day. I mean, coming from college is a big step. So it's really hard."

 

Because of his height and long frame, Geathers actually looks slender at 300 pounds. He's being groomed at end and his development is no less a project than Danso's.

 

"He is a giant man ... a big, big man and he has got long arms," Mangini said. "What he has to focus on is when you are that tall and have arms like that, how to use them effectively. Your height naturally brings you up above the offensive lineman. You have to get used to and really train your body to stay low because whoever has the leverage is going to win.

 

"You love the size, you love the length, those things are really positive things. Understanding how he has to play, which is different than some other guys. You add a couple of inches either way, it changes things. That's what we are trying to do with him."

 

These are two raw, physical talents for coordinator Rob Ryan and defensive line coach Bryan Cox to shape into players. They have become fast friends.

 

"Danso's a real good guy. He's always inspiring me to do better," Geathers said. "He's a phenomenal athlete, I believe. I think he's doing the same thing I'm doing, just trying to get better."

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how nice,your able to read a Plain Dealer article and copy it word for word.

 

It is nice. It allows people to read the articles here without scouring the next.

 

 

 

I and others appreciate it.

 

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If he can be 75% of what J. Peppers is, then we would have a monster on our team, this yesr will be a learning curve but next he will start taking over. As for Danso he is probably a few year project, which sucks cuz he will be in his 30s then. I cant wait to see the D this year, I think we will be beating some asses.

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I like the upside to Geathers.....a 300 pound d lineman with an attitude. seems extremely motivated and confident in his abilities. Hope he keeps blindsiding the free agents and skirmishing in practice with

 

his teammates. Lets hope this 'kick ass and take names' attitude can help the Browns win some football games

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It is nice. It allows people to read the articles here without scouring the next.

 

 

 

I and others appreciate it.

 

thank you. i post interesting articles on this board for various reasons. i like to inform my fellow fans who may have not seen a particular article. i also like posting articles on here like this because it makes it easier for us to discuss them. some people may have already read it, but having it on this board makes it easier to quote and dissect for convo. plus i enjoy talking about the browns with people who appreciate them like i do. B)

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If he can be 75% of what J. Peppers is, then we would have a monster on our team, this yesr will be a learning curve but next he will start taking over. As for Danso he is probably a few year project, which sucks cuz he will be in his 30s then. I cant wait to see the D this year, I think we will be beating some asses.

 

yeah, i think our d is going to do some damage this year!

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in another article about danso that i posted a while back, it said the reason he had to work 2 jobs was to pay his way through school. i really root for guys like this to make it and be successful. imagine if he was able to work less and go to football practice more? maybe we got ourselves another steal?

 

this quote suggests that maybe his lack of practice time can be turned into a positive?

 

There is an upside to Danso' limited exposure to football. The somewhat passive, read-and-react nature of the Browns' scheme, particularly for the nose, might not be as difficult a transition for Danso as it would be for a college end used to shooting one gap to the quarterback.
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If these two young guys could develop, we could have the makings of a real nice powerful and young DL. I know Danso is already 28 but still, you figure if you can get this guy ready to play a bit his rookie year, you could have a guy who plays solid for you for at least 5 to 6 years, especially in the frame of mind as his body hasn't been through a lot of wear and tear.

 

I love Geathers attitude as well. A fire to suceed burns within this kid and i think he'll really make this team and become a very solid player for us. You cannot teach 300 pounds of muscle!

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If these two young guys could develop, we could have the makings of a real nice powerful and young DL. I know Danso is already 28 but still, you figure if you can get this guy ready to play a bit his rookie year, you could have a guy who plays solid for you for at least 5 to 6 years, especially in the frame of mind as his body hasn't been through a lot of wear and tear.

 

I love Geathers attitude as well. A fire to suceed burns within this kid and i think he'll really make this team and become a very solid player for us. You cannot teach 300 pounds of muscle!

 

tc is going to be real interesting this year and i'm definitely going to keep an eye on these 2 guys to see how/if they develop.

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