CLEVELAND -- Heading into just his third regular-season game with the Cleveland Browns, veteran defensive back Jamar Taylor is getting to face his old team, the Miami Dolphins, at Hard Rock Stadium Sunday afternoon.
But despite getting traded from the Dolphins to the Browns in a draft weekend trade, Taylor is not letting on that this game means more to him than another one on the schedule.
“Like any other game, exciting,” Taylor said after Friday’s practice. “Every time that you get an opportunity to play and I’m healthy and I can be out there, you have to realize how blessed you are. I’m excited every week.
“I’m not pumping this game up bigger than what it needs to be. I know as a team we need the win. It is bigger than me, and that is all I’m worried about.”
Throughout the week of practice and in meeting rooms, Browns defensive coordinator Ray Horton has seen the same focus from the fourth-year cornerback as they were preparing to face the Dolphins.
“He has been a very quiet professional,” Horton said. “He came in here from Miami obviously, and it is always I think a big game for no matter who you are when you either go back to your hometown or you go back to your home team, if you will, the team that drafted you. He knows all the guys inside and out.
“Obviously, he practiced with the new regime down there, and it will be a big game for him. He has not said this, but I just think human nature is… You know, when you get divorced you want your new spouse to look better than the old spouse so I’m sure he wants to show Miami that he is doing well up here.”
Taylor admitted that being in the offseason program with the Dolphins has given him “a little bit” of help in preparing to face quarterback Ryan Tannehill, but his focus is on “just going out there and just try and do my job,” regardless of if the Browns’ defense will play without two-time Pro Bowl cornerback Joe Haden because of groin injury.
“I’m going to go out there and play football, same game I have been playing since I was five years old,” Taylor said.
“We will be good, man. We’ll be good. I have confidence in myself. I know Tramon (Williams) does have confidence in himself. I know the defense, they have confidence in us and the coaches do, as well. Whatever happens will happen.
“I think what you see is guys ready to step up, guys ready to carry the flag. We preach that all the time. The guys that are getting their name called this week or last week, they are doing a good job.”