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Josh Lenz, young Browns WRs go through final audition vs. Bears

CHICAGO -- Josh Lenz had a feeling Thursday would be his busiest game of the preseason, but it went to a different level Wednesday when he learned a little bit more about the coaches' plans.

On top of starting and playing the entire first half at his natural wide receiver spot, Lenz learned he'd be needed at safety. The Browns rested their entire starting secondary, had injuries hampering a handful of reserves and wanted to rest special teams ace Johnson Bademosi, who received a bunch of repetitions in the first three preseason games.

Lenz, a former high school defensive back who has been fighting for a full-time roster spot since he entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent in 2013, didn't need the details.

"The more you can do," Lenz said after Cleveland's 24-0 loss to Chicago. "I was out there and doing what they asked me to do."

That applied even more at the position he hopes to play as a member of Cleveland's 53-man roster.

On a tough night for the Browns offense, Lenz led the way with four receptions for 49 yards. He showed off crisp route running, good hands and some hops throughout his most complete game of the preseason.

In the days leading up to the game, Lenz was mentioned by Browns coach Mike Pettine as a player who was fighting for one of the final four or five roster spots. He left Soldier Field with "no regrets" about how he's played since he signed with the Browns in late May.

"It's just a waiting game now," Lenz said. "I feel like I went out there and did everything I could in the preseason and put some good things on film. Now you just have to wait and see how they feel."

Just a few lockers to the left, rookie Vince Mayle offered similar answers to a similar line of questioning.

The fourth-round pick out of Washington State caught two passes Thursday in his most extensive action of the preseason. His penalty in the second quarter negated a long kickoff return by Darius Jennings, a rookie wide receiver who is also fighting for a roster spot. Jennings had three catches for 8 yards and a costly fumble inside Chicago territory.

Earlier in the week, Pettine said Mayle was having some adjustment issues from college to the NFL, and Mayle said Thursday the plays in John DeFilippo's offense have been tough for him to master after playing in such a drastically different offense at Washington State.

"I feel good about how I went out and competed and anything I can do to make the team," Mayle said. "It's up to the guys upstairs now and I'll wait it out and wait it out."

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