CLEVELAND -- Quarterback Kevin Hogan was on the Cleveland Browns’ active roster for just 12 days before taking meaningful snaps in a regular-season game, and he did his best to make an impact in the team’s 31-17 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium Sunday.
On in relief because starter Cody Kessler suffered a concussion in the first half of the loss, Hogan accounted for 204 yards with a rushing touchdown and two interceptions in the loss to the Bengals.
“I felt very comfortable out there,” Hogan said. “I felt good in the huddle, leading the guys and getting to the right plays. There are some plays you’d like to have back. Obviously, you want to protect the ball and put your team in the best position to keep the ball and go in and score. There are some plays I’d like back, but overall, I felt very comfortable out there and confident.”
Already in the game on multiple occasions to run out of the shotgun formation, Hogan accounted for a team-best 104 yards and a 28-yard touchdown on just seven carries against the Bengals. Hogan’s 104 rushing yards were the second-most in a single game by a quarterback in Browns history.
The Browns began the third quarter knowing that Kessler would not return to the game because of a concussion suffered in the first half, but Hogan made the most of his first extended time running the offense.
Facing heavy pressure on first-and-10 from Cincinnati’s 28-yard line, Hogan scrambled to his left, cut back across the field and fought his way through a Bengals tackle at the goal line for a touchdown, his first NFL score.
Hogan’s first touchdown drew the Browns to within four points of the Bengals, 21-17, with 10:43 to play in the third quarter.
“It’s something that I’ve always trusted and something I did a little bit at Stanford,” Hogan said of running the ball. “If there was nothing there downfield, then I felt comfortable with my legs that I could get a first down or a big gain. It was nice during the week to rep some of those run plays, and it happened to pay off during the game.
“I think if I’m smart about it and avoid the hits, and do it within the scheme of our offense and don’t try and go crazy with it. If I can get a few yards, get five yards and some positive gains, and get down and protect myself, I think that’s going to be really valuable for our offense.”
With Kessler in the NFL Concussion Protocol until he can exert himself without physical issues and gets back to his baseline test results, Hogan is ready to do whatever is necessary should he need to start against the New York Jets at FirstEnergy Stadium Sunday.
“I’m confident in myself and my preparation,” Hogan said. “I feel good about my process and putting in the work, studying, watching film, getting reps during and after practice. I’m confident in myself. Obviously, I hope that Cody makes a speedy recovery. He’s our quarterback and we trust him, but I’m going to do everything I can to make sure I’m ready.”