BEREA - Browns linebacker Scott Fujita's role in the New Orleans Saints' bounty scandal grows more mysterious every day.
Fujita has steadfastly denied being involved in the bounty system that was put into place by former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams. Fujita didn't go into detail during a press conference on the first day of organized team activity (OTA) practices two weeks ago, but he said the entire story will eventually be revealed.
Documentary filmmaker Sean Pamphilon said that Fujita urged him to release an audiotape of a pre-game speech delivered by Williams prior to a playoff game against the San Francisco 49ers last January. Williams is heard encouraging players to target opponents with the intent of doing harm.
Fujita didn't go into detail about conversations he's had with Pamphilon when addressing reporters after practice Tuesday, saying it's a personal matter.
Pamphilon, who had exclusive behind-the scene access to the Saints, said that Williams was seen handing out envelopes containing money to players, some of whom shouted "Give it back." Pamphilon quoted Fujita as saying, "I can't believe I used to be that guy."
Pamphilon theorizes that Fujita wanted the tape released so that it would point fingers at Williams and deflect criticism away from the players. Fujita was eventually suspended the first three games of next season by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Williams was placed on indefinite suspension. Linebacker Jonathan Vilma was suspended for the entire season.
Fujita has appealed his suspension.
Fujita doesn't deny saying things that may now be deemed inappropriate, but he maintains his innocence regarding the bounty system.
"I don't have regrets for anything I've ever done," he said. "You say things in meetings occasionally. There's pre-game speech and bravado. It's all funny, and the next day you laugh about it. I don't regret anything. It's just a part of the growth as a man and a football player."
LEARNING LESSONS: Rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden had an up-and-down day. He was intercepted twice - once each by safety Eric Hagg and James Dockery. On the play after Hagg's pick Weeden connected with Mohamed Massaquoi on a deep crossing route.
Weeden said he's learned to bounce back quickly mistakes. He learned to do that during his career as a baseball pitcher.
"They always say wash your hands and move on," he said. "I put that (pick) behind me. That comes from baseball. I gave up a lot of home runs in baseball. I'm going to make mistakes. It's how you bounce back the next series."
ALL THE SAME: Coach Pat Shurmur doesn't place more emphasis on minicamp workouts than he does OTAs. The only difference is the players have a short walk-through session prior to practice.
"To me it's just another day of playing in the yard," Shurmur said.
MAKING THE GRADE: Rookie running back Adonis Thomas is still on the roster. Thomas, who rushed for more than 1,000 yards each of the two seasons at Toledo, is one of four tryout players that emerged from the rookie minicamp.
"He's quick and he understands how to run the football," Shurmur said. "When we've thrown him the ball, he's done a nice job of catching it."
GOING CAMPING: Quarterback Colt McCoy was inconsistent. He had a pass intercepted by Dimitri Patterson in 1-on-1 drills Weeden connected with rookie receiver Travis Benjamin on a deep fade route. Benjamin, who was covered by rookie cornerback Trevin Wade, made a good catch on a pass that was underthrown. Cornerback Buster Skrine made a diving breakup on a deep pass from Weeden to Benjamin.