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Need to Know: 'Steady Eddie' Kevin Hogan prepares for starting debut

Browns coach Hue Jackson described Kevin Hogan as "Steady Eddie" earlier this week. He reiterated that Friday as the second-year quarterback prepares for his first-career start this weekend.

"I haven't noticed any difference in him," Jackson said as Hogan and Cleveland prepare for a road trip to Houston.

Hogan, who earned the starting nod over rookie DeShone Kizer, passed for 194 yards, two touchdowns and an interception in last week's loss to the Jets. Jackson expressed confidence in the former Stanford standout who has developed nicely since joining the Browns' practice squad at the beginning of last season.

"I just think the young man knows how to play," he said. "He has enough arm talent and strength to do the things that we need him to do, and he has demonstrated that."

— Center JC Tretter and right tackle Shon Coleman are listed as questionable for Sunday's game in Houston, but Jackson expressed confidence in both being able to play.

"I think there is a good chance, I do. I wouldn't say it if I didn't think so because I know I would get it if I am wrong."  Cleveland's starting offensive line — Tretter, Coleman, Joe Thomas, Joel Bitonio and Kevin Zeitler — have played together every game thus far.

— Starting wide receiver Kenny Britt is also questionable (groin/knee) after missing last week's loss to the Jets. Jackson said that might've given the veteran a chance to reset himself after inconsistent play through the first month of the season. "I thought that was important. I just want him to be healthy, first and foremost, so that he can put his best foot forward," he said.

"We need to get the best version of Kenny Britt. That's what's important. If there's anything that I think isn't right, then obviously, I would hold him so we'll see where he is tomorrow." Britt, who joined the team in free agency this past spring, has eight catches for 121 yards and a touchdown.

— After an 0-for-2 showing against the Jets, special teams coordinator Chris Tabor expects rookie kicker Zane Gonzalez, who grew up in the Houston area, to bounce back in his hometown this weekend.

"I think it's just having confidence in the kid. I think he just needs to get out there and do what the good Lord has given him the talent to do," Tabor said. "I think that he'll do that. He has had a good week of practice. I'm excited for him. He is going back home, being able to kick down there in front of his friends and family."

— The Texans will be without defensive end J.J. Watt and linebacker Whitney Mercilus after placing the two standouts on injured reserve earlier this week. Jackson said Cleveland's offense will still have its hands full this weekend. "If you can call it catching a break, I don't see the break because they are still pretty good," he said, laughing, pointing to defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, linebacker Benardrick McKinney and cornerback Johnathan Joseph. "They have a good defensive football team."

— The return of Pro Bowl linebacker Jamie Collins could give defensive coordinator Gregg Williams some additional flexibility this weekend. "I'm looking forward to coaching him for a long time because he already has shown me some things where we have made a call and he has said to me like, 'You're making that call because you're thinking this,'" Williams said.  

"I look at him and I'm thinking, 'That is pretty sharp.' A lot of people don't understand what I'm guessing. Just go do your job. He has that ability that 'You're thinking this. Gregg, you're guessing this.' That's going to come just from him and I being together more, too."

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