Originally posted on Fox Sports Ohio  |  Last updated 9/13/12
BEREABengals linebacker Rey Maualuga said he didnt see anything spectacular from running back Trent Richardson last Sunday. He can run you over and you can miss a tackle, at the same time, from what weve seen he didnt do nothing spectacular, Maualuga told CBSSports.com earlier this week. From running screens, missing passes, trying to find a hole when hes running the ball. He just didnt do anything spectacular from what Ive seen. Im pretty sure hes going to want to get after it once he plays us. Maualuga was the 37th player selected in the 2009 NFL Draft by the Bengals, one spot after the Browns selected wide receiver Brian Robiskie. Maualuga had seven tackles in the season opener against the Ravens. Richardson did have very pedestrian numbers in his debut with just 39 yards in 19 carries for a 2.1 average. He caught one pass for five yards and dropped a pass in his first action after missing a month of training camp and the entire preseason. Richardsons response to Maualugas comments was short and to the point. Of course, it sparked me, Richardson said after practice Thursday. Ill just let my game speak for itself on Sunday. Pat Shurmur said it wasnt his style to put stories or quotes like that in a players locker to give the player extra incentive. Offensive coordinator Brad Childress said he theres no doubt in is mind that Richardson will break loose soon. Hes a dynamic player, Childress said. Its not a matter of if, its a matter of when. Shurmur said he expects more from Richardson this week. I think so., he said. I saw him practice yesterday better than he did a week ago. I anticipate hell have a better performance. Childress said there was no formula on how much work Richardson could handle in his first game. I think he was strong, Childress said. We saw more spryness (Wednesday at practice. We were comfortable with him obviously. We didnt want to overdo it and didnt, he said. You have to trust your eyes. Its more a feel thing as you go along. Richardson said he expects more this week. Yeah, most definitely, he said. My expectations are always going to be high. I always set my goals high and the sky is always the limit as I see it as how good I can be or how good this team can be. As a group and as a unit how much we can come together and try to do the best we can to win. Richardson said hes more than ready to expand his role, whether that be more carries or on third down. Im going to play my role, he said. If coach needs me on third down, Im going to go in on third down. If he needs Brandon (Jackson) to be in there, if he needs Chris (Ogbonnaya) to be in there, Montario (Hardesty), whoever it is we are all out here hungry for the same thing. We are all ready to win, so whichever one of us he puts in there, we will do everything it takes to win. Notebook Division Drought: The Browns were winless in the AFC North last season and are hoping to get out of the gate with a win in their first divisional game this week. The initial goal is to win the division because thats what gets you to the playoffs, Shurmur said. Its important and we have to get it done. Injury Report: Doubtful: LB James-Michael Johnson (ribsoblique, DB Ray Ventrone (hand); Questionable: OL Oniel Cousins (ankle), OL John Greco (calf), OL Joe Thomas (knee), TE Ben Watson (thigh). Probable: DB Sheldon Brown (neck), TE Jordan Cameron (groin), LB Scott Fujita (knee), OL Alex Mack (knee), RB Chris Ogbonnaya (ankle) and RB Trent Richardson (knee). CB Dre Kirkpatrick (knee) is out for the Bengals. Neither Ventrone or Johnson practiced Thursday. Thomas has not missed a game in his five-year careerstarting 81-straight games-- practiced with a wrap on his left knee. Thomas said the injury isnt a concern. Im doing good, he said after Thursdays practice. When you start getting to be an old man like me, you need to care less reps (in practice). Wheres Jordan?: The anticipation coming into the season was that TE Jordan Cameron would be much more involved in the passing game after being an afterthought as a rookie. Cameron was injured in the preseason and is listed on the injury report this week with a groin injury. In the opener with the Eagles, Cameron had no receptions and just one ball thrown his way. Theres no conspiracy theory, Shurmur said. He was part of an offense that wasnt very effective. Im happy with him. Shurmur called Cameron the most improved player from a season ago. Hes one of those guys from a year ago, hes improved the most and I think theres a huge upside for him, he said. The more you practice and play, the better you get. The Browns released TE Evan Moore, in large part because of the emergence of Cameron. Schwartz Play: Shurmur described rookie RT Mitchell Schwartzs play in his NFL debut against the Eagles. I thought he battled pretty well, Shurmur said. There were a couple of plays that he couldve done better. He did better against Philadelphia than he did in the preseason matchup. Everybody has to play better than we did. LT Joe Thomas said he sees the development of Schwartz. Hes making good improvement, Thomas said. I expect him to keep improving. Fujita Ready: Shurmur said that if LB Scott Fujita is ready to play Sunday, he will, even with the chance that his suspension will be re-instated. Scott looked good, he said. This is a all hands on deck time of year. Fujita is looking forward to finally getting back on the field. Im excited to get back on the field, he said. Its been a long, weird off-season. Defensive coordinator Dick Jauron said he will see how Fujita looks in the final practices. Well see how it works with Scott and how he holds up, he said. He hasnt played in a while. Jauron likes the way LB Craig Robertson and LB L.J. Fort played. The young guys played hard and fast and had fun, he said. They were productive. Theyre both tough and they can run, he said. To this point, theyve been great teammates. They fit right in and have been quality performers on special teams. Theyre quick and fast and they can get to people in the run game. DBs Challenge: Jauron admitted the Browns will have a tough task defending WR A.J. Green, especially losing CB Joe Haden starting this week. Haden has kept Greens numbers in check, although he gave up one big play in each game last seasonboth contributing greatly in the Browns losing the game. Joes done a pretty good chance against everybody, Jauron said. One play is always critical. (Greens) a very talented receiver and they target him. Its never a good thing (to lose a player), Jauron said. The guys whove been here will get a chance to go out and compete. Well be O.K. Its a challenge to go against their skill people. Jauron said he doesnt think the absence of Haden will affect the calls he makes regarding blitzes. I dont think it will affect the way we call the game. Whether its CB Dimitri Patterson or CB Buster Skrine, both will have their hands full Sunday. Whoever plays on A.J. Green will have a challenge because hes a very good player, Jauron said. Jauron likes the way Skrine and Patterson play. They only know one way to play and we like how they play. Worth Quoting: OC Brad Childress on the O-Lines play against the Eagles: It couldve been better. It wasnt good enough to win. Winning is a great deodorant.
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