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Bears Defeat Browns 24-0

CHICAGO  -- With four or five roster spots up for grabs, the Cleveland Browns will still have many excruciating decisions to make this weekend following a 24-0 loss against the Chicago Bears on Thursday.

Collectively, it was not a banner evening for the Browns. But individually, some last-minute jockeying for spots on the 53-man roster was happening at Soldier Field.

Wide receiver Josh Lenz caught four passes for 49 yards – all in the first half. Signed on May 30, the former Colt and Bear has consistently made plays during his time in Cleveland. Lenz finishes the preseason with seven catches for 108 yards and even logged snaps as a safety in the second half when the Browns were in a pinch.

Defensive lineman Billy Winn had a tackle for a loss and was playing like his hair was on fire. Did the release of both Phil Taylor and Ishmaa'ily Kitchen carve out enough room for the 26-year-old on the 53-man roster? Entering his fourth year with the team, Winn had 31 tackles and an interception in 2014.

Angling for position in the tight ends room, Rob Housler caught a short pass over the middle in the first quarter and turned it into a swift 19-yard gain. E.J. Bibbs caught one pass for 4 yards.

Wide receiver Terrelle Pryor saw his first two touches as a Brown in a peculiar place – under center as a quarterback. Late in the third quarter, the towering 6-foot-4 athlete took two read-option scrambles for 9 total yards.

Thaddeus Lewis started at quarterback and completed 12 straight passes at one point, finishing the night 14-of-20 for 100 yards and one interception.

A trio of impact players, Terrance West, Dwayne Bowe and Xavier Cooper, received heavy playing time for a final tune-up before the season opener against the New York Jets. Playing the entire first half, West rushed the ball nine times for 35 yards. Bowe caught a pass for 8 yards and played three quarters. Cooper leveled Bears quarterback David Fales on a third down in the first quarter, forcing an errant pass.

As for the game itself, there were many teachable moments the Browns will take away.

Cleveland fumbled twice in the first half, one leading to a Chicago touchdown. Playing behind all an offensive line filled with reserves, Lewis was sacked seven times and threw a pick-six in the third quarter to Bears safety Sherrod Martin.

Sloppy tackling from the Browns led to a 19-yard touchdown from Bears wide receiver Marc Mariani in the second quarter. Chicago running back Jeremy Langford had six carries for 47 yards. A block-in-the-back penalty from Vince Mayle wiped out a 55-yard kick return from Darius Jennings.

The Browns players will have the weekend off, but the coaches and scouting department won't. Coach Mike Pettine and general manager Ray Farmer will have to cut 22 players by Saturday and also form a 10-man practice squad.

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