Answer To Pass Rush Prayers?

The Browns are in desperate need of a pass rusher and they may have found one as an undrafted free agent out of Jackson State. In his 2010 debut, Marcus Benard was all over the field last Sunday in Tampa Bay.

BEREA, Ohio—The Browns have been looking for a pass rusher and maybe Marcus Benard is going to fill the bill.

Benard got to the quarterback twice and was credited with 1.5 sacks last Sunday against Tampa Bay. Benard started at outside linebacker and had three tackles, including one tackle for a loss and two quarterback hurries.

He combined with Scott Fujita for a sack and then had a solo later in the game.

"I was pleased with the pressure we put on the quarterback with the three sacks," Eric Mangini said.

Benard has only played in seven NFL games and he has five sacks, including 3.5 in the final six games of 2009.

Benard doesn't really care what he's asked to do.

"It doesn't matter to me," Benard said before the first game. "I just want a role. Wherever it is starting backing up, practice squad or giving them a look."

Benard said he's made strides on the outside.

"At outside linebacker is where I made my biggest improvement," he said. "My reads are better. I'm seeing the field better."

Benard joined the Browns last year as an undrafted free agent out of Jackson State. His strides from his rookie year have been immense. He was on the Browns practice squad for the first 10 games last year and then he was active for the final six games. During that span, Benard had 3 ½ sacks.

"When I came in I was doing a new position," Benard said. "I was kind of thrown to the wolves, so to say, being from a small school, I was raw.  I just continue to work hard and do what the coaches tell me to do. It's worked for me in the past and I think it could continue for me."

Notebook

Jake's Debut: Mangini said that quarterback Jake Delhomme should not have thrown the pass that was intercepted by defensive Ronde Barber. Mangini said it would have been best to throw the ball away and not take the sack because of the field position.

"He should've thrown it away because of field position."

Mangini said that Delhomme twisted his ankle, but had no further updates.

"He got a little twisted up ankle," Mangini said. "We'll get him tested and get a better idea where he's at (Wednesday)."

Mangini said there was talk about putting quarterback Seneca Wallace into the game.

"We talked about that, but there was communication with (Delhomme) and the trainers," he said. "We have packages for Seneca and that's not something we're the least uncomfortable with."

Mangini thinks Delhomme will bounce back.

"Because he's smart," he said. "He cares and he understands what needs to be done, it goes back to the quarterback, but it's a group effort."

Why no Time Out?: Mangini was asked why the Browns didn't call timeout with under a minute to go on the fourth down play.

"We had two plays called and should've had no problem with that," Mangini said. "Our thought process was keeping the three timeouts there."

Here We Go Again: Mangini was asked if he was worried about the players thinking here were go again as the team started 1-11 in 2009.

"This is not that type of group," Mangini said. "There's nobody in (the locker room) that feels that way. We have a lot of new guys in there who weren't part of last year who are veteran guys, who are mature and know how to fix problems."

Linebacker Chris Gocong, although a new player, agreed.

"This team has seen its turmoil," he said. "But, you go out expecting to win each game."

Too Many Mistakes: The Browns turned the ball over three times and had five penalties in the game and Mangini said that's inexcusable.

"One fumble is way too many for me," he said. "We work on that and that's the starting point, it's way too many."

The Browns have fumbled 13 times in the past five games, including the preseason.

The Browns didn't have many penalties, but they had some that really were costly, including one on fourth-and-four with less than a minute to play.

"All the penalties frustrate me because we don't practice those things and they're under our control," he said. "That's the first step in taking care of things we can control."

Lauvao Sighting: Offensive lineman Shawn Lauvao was in the locker room with a boot on his left ankle. He was putting weight on the foot. He missed last week's game with a sprained ankle. He will be updated on Wednesday.


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