The Cleveland Browns play their first preseason game on Saturday, August 14, 2021 at 7 pm in Jacksonville.
Fans hoping to see the veteran starters will be disappointed as Coach Kevin Stefanski is choosing to give rookies and backups the playing time in this first game.
Stefanski had announced earlier in the week that quarterback Baker Mayfield would not be playing.
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) August 12, 2021
UPDATE: Stefanski says we will rest 'majority of the starters' in the first preseason game.
— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) August 12, 2021
Stefanski knows there is a long season ahead so he is taking that into consideration with this preseason game.
“I think you take it all into account,” Stefanski said in his press conference on Thursday. “I think you take what you learned last year, you take the extra game, you take your players [into account]…We’re just going to do what we think is right for the Cleveland Browns and specifically what’s right for each player. That’s how we’ll approach really all of our decisions.”
It is unclear what that means for the second and third preseason games on the Browns schedule on August 22 and 29.
Who Will We See?
#Browns coach Kevin Stefanski said he expects all healthy rookies to play Saturday night, including first-round pick Greg Newsome II and second-round pick Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah. Stefanski added he's eager to see second-year guys play after no preseason games for them last yr.
— Nate Ulrich (@ByNateUlrich) August 12, 2021
Stefanski indicated that rookie first-round draft pick cornerback Greg Newsome II will play against Jacksonville.
In addition, second-round draft pick, linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah is expected to play.
Veterans not named OBJ who are coming off injuries will also see playing time.
Those include cornerback Greedy Williams.
Williams did not play in 2020 due to a nerve injury in his shoulder.
Offensive lineman Chris Hubbard who had knee surgery in December is also expected to be in the game.
The Browns are leaving for Jacksonville on Friday, August 13.
They are returning on Sunday, August 15.
Those not playing will not be on the sidelines in Jacksonville either; they are staying behind to train in Berea over the weekend.