BEREA - The Browns are finally getting healthy at receiver, which creates a problem when putting together the 45-man active roster on game day.
Mohamed Massaquoi and Travis Benjamin are practicing this week for Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts. Massaquoi missed three weeks with a hamstring injury, and Benjamin was out two weeks with a similar injury.
With both expected to play Sunday, a decision will have to be made on rookie receiver Josh Cooper, who was activated from the practice squad last week. Cooper had two receptions for 39 yards, including a nice grab on a back-shoulder pass by quarterback Brandon Weeden.
"I thought it was a good start," Shurmur said. "He made a couple of contested catches that weren't the easiest, which is good. I saw him into the flow of the game, mentally and emotionally, and it looked like he was playing fast. Those are all things he can build on.
"I go into this knowing he has a natural connection with Brandon. I anticipate he'll continue to improve."
Both quarterbacks this week will have the advantage Sunday of working with a receiver that was a teammate in college. Weeden and Cooper played at Oklahoma State, while quarterback Andrew Luck and tight end Coby Flenner of the Colts played at Stanford.
"It helps initially," Shurmur said. "When they come in here, they're learning what we all do. It all runs parallel. To have a natural feel for how a guy is going to get open, and then to develop that feel, helps jump start that relationship for sure."
MISTAKE ADMITTED: Defensive coordinator Dick Jauron admitted that he should have eased up on cornerback Joe Haden's playing time last Sunday against the Bengals. It was Haden's first game back after serving a four-game suspension, and his legs began to wear down late in the game.
"He draws a tough assignment (A.J. Green) after a four-week layoff," Jauron said. "We kind of matched him on an outstanding receiver. He held his own. The receiver had a terrific day against us.
"I wish I had noticed more or anticipated more how much the game would take out of him. At the end of the game he had lost his legs to some degree. It made sense after the fact."
Jauron anticipates that a second week of practice should provide Haden with fresher, stronger legs.
ON A CRUISE: Offensive coordinator Brad Childress admittedly had no knowledge of receiver Josh Gordon before the Browns selected him in the supplemental draft last June.
"I never saw a snap of him," Childress said. "I got off a cruise boat. Someone said, 'we signed Josh Gordon.' I said, who's Josh Gordon?"
LITTLE HELP, PLEASE: Fullback Owen Marecic has been of no help to the offense as a pass catcher. He's dropped each of the four passes thrown his way by Weeden.
"In relation to anyone dropping the ball, those a lot of times are drive-stoppers," Childress said. "They don't just happen necessarily on third downs. You don't see a lot of statistics about those. It says those are three-and-outs. You focus on the three-and-outs, but what stopped it in fact."
CLEVELAND FAN: Oliver Luck, the father of Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, attended St. Ignatius High School and was a backup for the Houston Oilers. Andrew has some memories of Cleveland as a result.
"My uncle had Dawg Pound tickets for a long time, so I always wanted to be in the Dawg Pound," Andrew said. "We had a Browns sweatshirt from the late '70s hanging around our house. Every one of my siblings and I wore it at some point in our lives.
"I always listen to stories of my dad going to the old stadium. We grew up sort of rooting for them."