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Jauron: Sheard 'playing at high level'

Posted Oct 13, 2012

Browns defensive coordinator Dick Jauron believes in Jabaal Sheard’s ability to rush the passer.

Second-year Cleveland Browns defensive end Jabaal Sheard registered a team-best 8.5 sacks during his first season in the National Football League in 2011. Through the first five games of the 2012 season, Sheard registered his lone sack of the season for a nine-yard loss against Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco.

Sheard has collected 15 total tackles and broken up two passes. Although he has registered only one sack, Sheard has been able to affect the opposing passers, something that has not gone unnoticed by the coaches.

“The guy is really a good football player and he’s playing at a high level,” Browns defensive coordinator Dick Jauron said. “Sometimes, you get the numbers and sometimes, you don’t. I think the longer he plays, the better he’s going to get and his numbers will get there. I think he’s a special player and a special guy too, a great teammate, team player. I really like this guy.”

Jauron said Sheard’s sack numbers have been down because he is a team player, one who plays within the scheme on the field.

“He’s not a guy that will play outside of it, so you can say I am not putting him in enough situations and letting him go,” Jauron said. “He’s not a guy that’s going to play for stats; he’s going to play the defense.”

Jauron said part of the reason Sheard has not registered as many sacks through the first five games of the season is because of the way the opponents have tried to balance his ability to rush the passer.

“There’s not a whole lot you can do if they want to slide the protection to you or make you a focal point of protection or chip you with a back,” Jauron said. “A lot of teams will chip. You can stunt to try to get away from the chip, but you can’t do it all the time.

“He’s getting all those things and he’s good enough to get their attention, so those things are a part of it, but also the fact that we’re not winning, I think that’s a part of it too. We’re behind in games like last week, not to the point where I think they change their play-calling, but it can happen at times. As I said, Jabaal, I think he will be a special player here for a long time.”