CLEVELAND -- Distractions? What distractions?
Despite reports tying the Cleveland Browns to a botched trade attempt for Cincinnati Bengals quarterback A.J. McCarron during the bye week, rookie signal-caller DeShone Kizer took the field for Wednesday’s practice, and did so focused on doing what was necessary to better lead the offense.
“He practiced well,” Browns coach Hue Jackson said. “No, not at all. I said to you guys and I had a very brief conversation with DeShone. I am always very honest with our players. I don’t sugarcoat anything. At the end of the day, the most important thing is nothing changed, so here we go.”
PHOTOS: Cleveland Browns QB DeShone Kizer shows improvement against Minnesota Vikings
Kizer was benched in each of his previous two starts and sat out a full game in-between heading into a 33-16 loss to the Minnesota Vikings at Twickenham Stadium in London on Sunday, October 29.
However, for the first time in a month, Kizer played a full game, completing 18 of his 34 attempts for 179 yards with no touchdowns and five carries for 18 yards with one score in a loss to the Vikings (6-2). More importantly for the Browns (0-8), Kizer did not turn the ball over in the loss.
“You go back and you play and you can’t worry about those things,” Jackson said. “I don’t want players worried about those things anyways. You shouldn’t be. You have a job to do, and that is all you can control. You have to let everything else take care of itself.”
In his first seven NFL starts, Kizer completed 111 of his 213 attempts (52.1 percent) for 1,144 yards with three touchdowns against a league-worst 11 interceptions. Additionally, Kizer took 15 sacks for 81 lost yards and holds a 51.1 quarterback rating.
“There could be some things that we do a little different,” Jackson said. “I thought we were making strides in some areas the last several weeks. We have to continue to do so, but there are some things we will try a little different just to see if we can spark this offense a little more.
“We have to score more points. Let’s just be honest, we do. We have to find a way to get the ball in the end zone a little more to have a chance over the next eight weeks.”