Browns May Rely On Montario Hardesty More Than They Orignally Planned

By Brian Murtaugh

The Cleveland Browns have to be in a bit of an offensive scramble after reports of multiple injuries surfaced earlier in the week. Starting left guard, Eric Steinbach, and runningback Brandon Jackson’s futures seem to be hanging in the balance as the team is looking into their possible eligibility for the injured reserve list.

With both of those players potentially out for the entire 2011 season, Cleveland has two more problems than what they had hoped for heading into the fourth week of the preseason against the Chicago Bears. The obvious hole left in the offensive line with Steinbach’s absence almost takes a backseat to Cleveland’s biggest offensive acquisition heading for the sideline. If Jackson is done for the year due to his toe injury, Montario Hardesty will likely take over the second-string running position and will carry a much bigger load than what the team had originally planned.

Hardesty appeared to be coming on strong in the 2010 preseason before a knee injury forced him to the sideline for his entire rookie campaign. The Browns have used the former Tennessee Volunteer sparingly as they had hoped to ease him into a small role for the upcoming season.

Cleveland will have to hope that Hardesty’s recovery is as good as the doctors have predicted if they do not pick up an additional rusher moving forward. Armond Smith and Quinn Porter are the two other runners currently on the active roster.

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