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Benjamin continues to make plays

Posted Dec 16, 2012

Rookie wide receiver Travis Benjamin made a big play for the second straight week with a 69-yard touchdown reception against the Redskins.

Cleveland Browns rookie wide receiver Travis Benjamin registered his second explosive play in as many weeks in Sunday’s 38-21 loss to the Washington Redskins in the home finale for the 2012 regular season.

With the Redskins leading, 31-14, and the Browns facing a third-and-seven at their own 31-yard line with just over 10 minutes left in the fourth quarter, quarterback Brandon Weeden took a snap from center Alex Mack and completed a pass to Benjamin down the right sideline.

Benjamin was behind the coverage of third-year cornerback D.J. Johnson, and, after catching the ball, he ran to the middle of the field and created enough space between himself and the defender to secure the touchdown.

“I’m pretty sure it was a busted coverage because as I got on him, he just seemed like he was jogging like a run (play),” Benjamin said. “I just ran right past him. He started his back pedal and I just ran past him.”

Weeden said the play was a product of the look Washington defensive coordinator Jim Haslett showed him at the line of scrimmage.

“He’s an aggressive play-caller, so I knew they were going to try and bring some kind of pressure,” Weeden said. “They did a little two fire-zone and brought pressure on my left side. We did a great job of picking it up and the safety didn’t get there. It was basically one-on-one with Travis and the corner because the safety was out of position. I happened to see it. It was one of the few times they had busted coverage throughout the whole day. They played it pretty well defensively, and for once, we were able to make them pay.”

Last Sunday, Benjamin returned a punt a team-record 93 yards for a touchdown against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Against the Chiefs, the Browns were down by four and went on to score 23 unanswered points, starting with Benjamin’s punt return on the first play of the second quarter. As the Chiefs lined up, Joshua Cribbs moved to the line of scrimmage to try and block the punt while Benjamin ran back to return.

Benjamin fielded the punt at the seven-yard line, ran through the Chiefs’ coverage unit, got to the Browns’ sideline and crossed back to the middle of the field before getting into the end zone. It was the longest punt return in Browns history, and also, the longest for a touchdown.

“You can say that (it’s coming together), knowing that my name and my number is being called throughout the offense and on special teams,” Benjamin said. “I’m just ready and feel up to the challenge.”