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News & Notes: Ronnie Harrison returns to practice, ready to pick up where he left off

Browns safety missed last week’s game because of a concussion

Ronnie Harrison Jr. was back at practice Wednesday and ready to pick up where Browns fans last saw him.

The Browns safety made his first start with the team and collected the first pick-six of his career in the team's Week 5 win over the Colts. But within a few minutes of the play, Harrison was on the sidelines undergoing evaluation for a concussion — an injury that would ultimately keep him out of the following week's game at Pittsburgh.

"It was kind of tough not being able to finish the game and not be out there to celebrate the win," Harrison said. "I'm just glad to be back and be back out with them. Happy to get this thing rolling this week."

Harrison's return is timely, as the Browns secondary continues to deal with injuries that have dogged it dating back to training camp. On the same day Harrison was back, veteran S Andrew Sendejo, who hasn't missed a snap this season, was a non-participant at Wednesday's practice because of a shin injury. S Karl Joseph, who has missed the past two games with a hamstring injury, also returned to practice.

"We are looking for guys that can make plays on defense and get that rock and Ronnie has done it," Browns coach Kevin Stefanski said. "Karl has played at a high level for us so I think we are fortunate that we have played a lot of guys early in this season already due to injury, which is not ideal, but guys are getting a lot of reps and we are comfortable with playing guys back there and if guys' their numbers are called they have a baseline of reps to work off." 

Harrison, who was acquired in a trade with the Jaguars, was slowly worked into the swing of things after joining the Browns just before the start of the season. His snaps gradually increased during the first part of the season before he took on full-time duty in the wake of Joseph's injury.

It's unclear just how Harrison will be utilized Sunday against the Bengals, but it's clear there will be a place for someone who can make the kind of plays he's already proven capable of making.

"Just trying to get back in there and pick up where I left off," Harrison said. "I just want to keep going out there and making plays, help out this defense and help out this team as much as I can."

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Stefanski said G Wyatt Teller was pushing hard to return for Sunday's game but admitted it would be difficult to do. Teller is dealing with a calf injury that kept him out of last week's game and sidelined him again for Wednesday's practice.

"Those injuries are hard," Stefanski said. "He is trying."

Chris Hubbard is poised to start for the second straight week in Teller's place.

LB Jacob Phillips was also a non-participant Wednesday. The third-round rookie continues to deal with a knee injury that has limited him to three games this season.

Involving Odell

Stefanski said "there are always things that we can do better" when it comes to getting WR Odell Beckham Jr. involved early and often in games.

Beckham, who missed practice Thursday and Friday with an illness, caught just two passes for 25 yards in last week's loss to the Steelers. He was targeted a season-low four times.

Beckham and Jarvis Landry are tied for the team lead with 319 receiving yards. He's also tied with RB Kareem Hunt for most touchdown catches (three).

"We can design better plays, just the rhythm of how we call them," Stefanski said. "I have said it before, it is no mystery he is a big part of our success. So, our success winning ballgames, he is going to be a big part of that. And I hope that includes individual success, obviously, for him. For all of our players, I want them all to have individual success. But No. 1 is the team success, and obviously he goes a very, very long way in our success."

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