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Need to Know: Josh Gordon takes next step toward returning to field

Josh Gordon worked up a sweat Monday as he took one step closer toward a return to the field.

Gordon, who was cleared by the NFL to practice starting Monday, worked out with the team's quarterbacks while the rest of team went through a variety of meetings, treatment and lifting one day after Sunday's 19-7 loss to the Jaguars. He'll be on the field with the Browns on Wednesday when they begin their on-field preparations for next week's game at Cincinnati.

"It is like Christmas. I get to open a new toy. I know what is in that box, but I just want to see how good it is," Browns coach Hue Jackson said. "It is exciting that he will be back out there."

Per the terms of his conditional reinstatement, Gordon can start practicing this week and be eligible to return for Cleveland's Week 13 matchup with the Chargers. The Browns would need to elevate Gordon to the 53-man roster at some point before the game.

"He has done everything we have asked him to do thus far," Jackson said. "He is working extremely hard. He is excited about being back and having the opportunity. I know that every chance I get to be with him – he was on our sideline yesterday, and it was a treat. Just (talking) with him and the things he saw. The ways he thinks he can help. To me, that was exciting. He is doing well, and hopefully, that will continue."

-- Perhaps no one in the Browns locker room can relate to what Emmanuel Ogbah is about to experience than offensive guard Joel Bitonio.

Bitonio underwent season-ending foot surgery last season and endured a lengthy recovery. He's been back to full strength this season and hasn't missed a single snap.

Ogbah, who was having a promising second season, was ruled out for the season Monday and will undergo surgery in the near future.

"Yeah it is tough. But I think the training staff does a good job of giving you little goals and taking it one day at a time in that sense," Bitonio said. "But you still look back at it and think, 'man I am not going to be able to do that or drive.' Little things like that where you are kind of on the shelf for a while. But we have the best training staff in the world. They will get him back. It is unfortunate but it is part of the game."

-- The Browns on Sunday followed up their best rushing performance of the season with their second-worst, gaining just 50 yards on 18 attempts.

Jackson said the lack of attempts was a byproduct of matchups within the game that didn't favor a ground-and-pound attack.

"We didn't play as well as we can play on offense. Period. Running game, passing game, nowhere. We can play better. I have seen us play better," Jackson said. "It is my job as a playcaller to make a decision of what is going to be the best way … That is who they were and their matchups were different. We could try to do that, but we weren't making [yards]. We were making a yard here and a yard there. That wasn't going to get us toward the end zone that way."

"In order for a play caller to keep running the ball, somebody better inspire the play caller to keep running – a runner, blocking, whatever that is. That wasn't happening yesterday. We did what we thought was best to give our team a chance to win."

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