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Need to Know: Browns expect O-Line to be full strength vs. Jaguars dominant pass rush

Posted Nov 17, 2017

C JC Tretter and RT Shon Coleman, listed as questionable Friday, expect to play

CLEVELAND — The Browns expect to have their starting offensive line ready to go this weekend.

With the exception of Pro Bowl left tackle Joe Thomas, who suffered a season-ending triceps injury last month, coach Hue Jackson believes center JC Tretter and right tackle Shon Coleman will play Sunday against the Jaguars.

The pair was listed as questionable in Friday's final injury report.

That’s good news, of course, as the Browns prepare for a Jacksonville team that leads the league with 35 sacks in nine games.

“It just means we have our unit. We still have to stop what they do, combat what they do,” Jackson said. “That’s our job. You want to have all your best guys out there playing. It’s still a tall challenge. We get it. It’s a good football team coming in here. We’re looking forward to it.”

— While Coleman, who suffered a concussion in last week’s game against Detroit, has exited the concussion protocol, Jackson said the right tackle still must be evaluated by an independent neurologist. “Hopefully, that will get done here soon. I think there will be a good chance he will be playing.”

— Cornerback Jamar Taylor is also questionable with an ankle injury, but Jackson believes the veteran will be able to suit up Sunday. “I think he’s fine. I really do,” he said.

— Cleveland’s run defense ranks fourth-best in the NFL, so it was a surprise when the Lions ripped off multiple runs of 20-plus yards in the first half of last week’s game. Though the Browns buckled down at halftime and gave up 104 yards (89 of which came in the first half), defensive coordinator Gregg Williams said those kinds of things can’t happen.

“We had a couple runs in that ball game, too, that was uncharacteristic of us because a couple of times, we were trying to affect the quarterback and wanting to affect the quarterback better in pass rush,” he said. “We didn’t set the edge a couple of times … I think we are the best team in the National Football League at setting the edge and setting the force.”

— Jaguars rookie Leonard Fournette might be the best running back the Browns have faced since the Steelers’ Le'Veon Bell in the season opener. Fournette, who has 629 yards and six touchdowns on 147 carries, is the centerpiece of the league’s best rushing offense. “He runs hard. He never dies easy,” Browns run game coordinator Kirby Wilson said. “He thinks every run is a home run.” Fournette, who is expected to play despite an ankle injury, was the fourth-overall pick in the NFL Draft last spring. ​

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