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Need to Know: Jackson uncertain about Kizer's playing status vs. Bears

Browns coach Hue Jackson said Tuesday he was still in the decision-making process when it came to whether or not rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer would play in Thursday's preseason finale.

"I know that I still want to see the young guys keep playing," Jackson said after Tuesday's practice, referring to second-year signal-callers Cody Kessler and Kevin Hogan. "I think that is important to further evaluate them with critical reps, but I haven't made a decision on where I am going to play DeShone and if DeShone is playing."

Jackson said Monday he was more focused on the team practicing well this week in its short turnaround between Saturday's dress rehearsal game at Tampa and this week's preseason finale and would let the players know about his plans for them "at some point in time." The Browns wrapped up their second practice in as many days since their 13-9 victory over the Buccaneers and will travel to Chicago on Wednesday.

Kizer is 25-of-49 for 351 yards, one touchdown and an interception. Kessler is 18-of-27 for 145 yards and Hogan is 8-of-14 for 89 yards and a touchdown in two games.

Cleveland has played its season-opening quarterback in the preseason finale in two of the past three years. The Browns played most of their offensive starters in the first quarter of last year's finale.

Jackson said the preseason finale can be nerve-wrecking for a coach because of the injury risk.

"Until it is over, it is over, but when it is over, you are right to the regular season and you hold your breath because it all depends on how you play your players and how you get them to and from the game," Jackson said. "It is another opportunity for us to learn how to go on the road. That is something we are going to have to do this year and learn how to prepare and stay focused. That is good training for our football team because it is a young team so we try to make a huge point about that as we go."

-- The Browns have made a handful of roster moves over the past couple of days, including Tuesday's releases of DL Cam Johnson and DB Ed Reynolds II, but carry more available players into this year's preseason finale than ones in years past because of an adjustment to the league's roster rules.

In the past, teams would have their rosters cut down to 75 at this point in the preseason. Now, there's only one mandatory cutdown at the end of the preseason to 53.

Jackson had only positive things to say about how it's affected his preparation for Thursday.

"At the end of the day it is still about evaluation. It has allowed us to keep more guys healthy, keep more guys here and maybe take some wear and tear off of guys. At the same time, these guys are going to get an opportunity to go out and showcase their talent and ability for 31 other teams if they don't make this team. I think there is some good in that, as well."

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