Terrelle Pryor was determined to do everything in his power to play against the Bengals after a hamstring injury limited him all week in practice.
As it turns out, the Browns wide receiver was able to suit up Sunday for a 31-17 loss in which Pryor playfully outlined how head coach Hue Jackson and the staff almost had to restrain him from taking more snaps than his less-than-healthy body could handle.
"There's a bunch of times where I ran out there and coach was like, 'Get back in here!'" Pryor said, laughing.
"I get into the competing with the guys so I really wanted to get out there and compete and try and help the guys, but what was best for the future weeks coming ahead was that I didn't play that much and run a lot so I thank coach Jackson for thinking of me individually like that, but I just tried to get out there and help as much as I could."
Pryor, who described himself as "80 percent," was limited to 31 snaps, catching two passes for 18 yards in a game that watched Cleveland's offense struggle to keep pace with a Bengals unit that totaled 559 yards. Even so, Jackson praised Pryor for playing through pain in hopes of helping lift the Browns to their first win of the season.
"I appreciate him being out there. Those guys who this organization — this football team — means so much to, they go out there regardless of what the situation is and try to play, and he did," Jackson said.
"In the end, I was trying to keep him out of there and he's trying to get back in there. That's just what he is — the guy likes playing."
Pryor, who said he spent the week doing everything in his power to get ready for Sunday, said he drew inspiration from his teammates.
"I know guys are out there fighting their hearts out and just because you've got a little nick or nagging pain or injury I could still try to help in some way," he said. "That's why I tried to play a little bit and the coaches let me play a little bit."
Pryor, who leads the Browns with 37 receptions for 496 yards and three touchdowns, said his hamstring continues to feel better and expects to play against the Jets this weekend.
"This week it should be even better, should be a lot better," he said. "Hopefully it'll get there and we'll get our first win."