Browns coach Pat Shurmur met with reporters this morning before practice. Here are some highlights from his chat with reporters:
Offensive lineman Tony Pashos, the projected starter at right tackle, participated in the team's walk-through session this morning without wearing a walking boot. Pashos, who's pictured to the left, had been sidelined all week with a sore foot, Shurmur said. "They made something for his shoe, so hopefully that will help him settle that foot down," Shurmur said. "He was actually out at the walk through, and we intend to practice him today and see how he's doing." Oniel Cousins, Artis Hicks and John Greco have been working at right tackle during practices, Shurmur said. However, Pashos will start if he's ready. "If practice goes well and the (medical) reports are that (Pashos will) be ready to go, then absolutely he'll be the starter," Shurmur said.
No one has officially been named the starting left guard for the regular-season opener against the Cincinnati Bengals, but rookie Jason Pinkston is in line to earn the job. Pinkston has been taking most, if not all, the reps at left guard with the first-team offense, Shurmur said. In addition to Pinkston, Hicks and Greco also have been working at left guard during practices, Shurmur said.
Running back Montario Hardesty, who tore the ACL in his left knee last year, won't be limited against the Bengals. "There's no pitch counts on anybody Sunday," Shurmur said. "We're out there to win the game. (Hardesty) will play. He'll get some carries, but as you know, Peyton Hillis is our starting tailback."
The Browns will have three new captains who will go out for the coin toss each week. Quarterback Colt McCoy, linebacker Scott Fujita and kicker Phil Dawson will serve as the game captains against the Bengals. Shurmur also said he has designated 15 players who he considers leaders, and he meets with them regularly to discuss the team's issues.
Shurmur said he expects linebacker Chris Gocong (pinched nerve in his neck) to start Sunday. Gocong returned to practice Wednesday. He had been sidelined since Aug. 8.
"There's a good chance" free safeties Mike Adams and Usama Young could both play on game days, Shurmur said.