Reporting Daryl Ruiter
BEREA (92.3 The Fan) – Typically the 4th and final preseason game is a night off for the starters.
Cleveland Browns head coach Rob Chudzinski has other ideas – for some of them.
“Generally, the guys who are with the ones would get 10-12 reps,” Chudzinski said. “But there’s a number of situations still that need to play out in terms of specifics of who’s going to play and those types of things.”
Chudzinski said he will announce his plans for actual playing time for his starters on Wednesday.
“Well I haven’t played in the 4th preseason game since 2008 or so, so it’s been about 5 years,” left tackle Joe Thomas joked. “Every coach has their philosophy. In the end it doesn’t really matter as long as you stay healthy.”
The Browns’ first-team offense sputtered against the Colts Saturday night at Indianapolis and didn’t score until their 7th possession – a field goal – early in the 3rd quarter.
Quarterback Brandon Weeden and running back Trent Richardson both said they don’t mind the extra work before the regular season kicks off Sept. 8.
“I expect to play,” Richardson said. “I don’t think there’s ever enough work that you can get. It’s always important to play each game no matter what amount of snaps you get, no matter what type of reps it is.”
That approach is music to Chudzinski’s ears.
“That’s a good sign and I think speaks a lot about their understanding of the value of preparation and continue to get reps and improve and get those opportunities to go out and play,” Chudzinski said. “So we’re approaching it this week [as if] those guys are all preparing themselves to play. I think that’s important in the process, so I like that attitude.”
The preseason finale is as entertaining as watching paint dry for fans but it’s also make or break for those on the roster bubble.
“The 4th game is really about the 2s and 3s trying to earn a job,” Thomas said. “If they can’t make this team they’re trying to put good film together so that they get picked up by [another] team.
“The game is really about those guys and not necessarily the Browns beating the Bears. That’s not the mindset going in. It’s these guys trying to earn a job in the NFL.”
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