Browns Preseason Begins in Detroit
DETROIT — The Cleveland Browns kicked off the preseason schedule in Detroit against the Lions Friday night.
The Browns gave 28-year-old rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden the starting nod last week.
Weeden was the favorite since the start of training camp and took all of the first snaps.
Last year’s starter, Colt McCoy, is second on the depth charts.
McCoy started 21 of Cleveland’s 32 games the past two seasons and will be competing for the backup role unless he is traded.
Rookie running back Trent Richardson will not play Friday against Detroit.
He continues to heal from a successful arthroscopic left knee surgery, but is expected to be healthy for the team’s first regular season game against Philadelphia.
Head coach Pat Shurmur said Friday will be a good opportunity for other backs to compete.
“I want to see efficient play,” Shurmur said. “We have a long line of backs there that we are going to get a few more reps now. They will get a chance to show us what they can do.”
The Lions are coming off of a 10-win season and a playoff appearance for the first time since 1999.
Most of their starters are set in stone, barring any injuries.
The Browns started veteran linebacker Scott Fujita, although he awaits a possible three-game suspension for his role in the Saints bounty system.
Linebacker Chris Gocong is also out for the year with a season ending knee injury.
The team has big expectations for rookie linebacker James-Michael Johnson who has impressed in training camp.
Greg Little and Mohamed Massaquoi started at the wide receiver positions, but two talented rookies will get a chance to prove their worth.
Travis Benjamin and Josh Gordon have done a great job of catching the ball in traffic and competing at the pro-level during camp and will get plenty of reps Friday.
Cleveland’s next preseason game is Friday, Aug. 28 against the Eagles, the same team they open up the regular season against on Sept. 9 at Browns Stadium.