BEREA — Quarterback Tyrod Taylor was benched, but coach Hue Jackson said he won’t be traded.
“He is going to be right here. He is not going anywhere,” Jackson said Monday after announcing No. 1 pick Baker Mayfield had replaced Taylor as the starter. “I think that is important. I think part of Baker being able to play like he did was because of Tyrod and Drew (Stanton, No. 3 QB). I do not want to upset that room that way. I do not think there is any reason to.”
Taylor is in the final year of his contract, so there was speculation after Mayfield’s breakthrough debut Thursday night in the 21-17 win over the Jets that Taylor could be traded.
“Tyrod is going to be needed,” Jackson said. “He is the backup quarterback on this team if he is healthy, and he has played. His teammates know who he is and how he goes about the rhythm of his game. I think it is always good to have that kind of depth at that position, especially if we are traveling down this road, which we are.”
Taylor sustained a concussion against the Jets, remained in the league’s protocol Monday and didn’t practice. Jackson said there’s a “good chance” he will be cleared this week and able to be the backup Sunday in Oakland against the Raiders.
Jackson said Taylor took the demotion as would be expected.
“He is a professional,” Jackson said. “Obviously, he is competitive. Nobody wants to hear that they are going in a different direction, but he understands it, too.
“I think the most important thing he wants is to get healthy and make sure he is ready to help the football team.”
The Browns planned to start Taylor for much, if not all, of the season. But he struggled through 2½ games then was hurt on a sack in which his helmet bounced off the ground, and Mayfield seized the opportunity.
Taylor went 4-for-14 for 19 yards and was sacked three times against the Jets. In his three starts, he was 41-for-84 (48.8 percent) for 462 yards, two touchdowns, two interceptions and a 63.7 rating.
“I think that he gave us everything he had,” Jackson said.
He said the offense’s struggles against the Jets — 74 yards and five first downs in six possessions before Mayfield — weren’t all Taylor’s fault.
“We did not do a lot of things early on offense in my opinion to help Tyrod,” Jackson said. “There were some blown assignments and mental errors we had that let some people have some free runners at him. We put him in a tough spot, too.”
BABY ON BOARD
Running back Carlos Hyde called Thursday “a handful day,” as he played against the Jets while his girlfriend was in the hospital about to deliver their baby boy. Carlos Hyde Jr. was born two hours after the game.
“I was in the room when he came out,” Hyde said. “I was one of the first people he saw.”
Hyde was at the hospital in the afternoon and arrived late for pregame warm-ups. He ran hard all night, rushing for 98 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries, but said his focus was split. He had someone on the sideline with his phone in case there was news from the hospital.
“The only time I shut it out was when I was actually playing,” he said. “Once I was on the sideline, that is what I was thinking about.”
Hyde turned 28 on Thursday, so the emotions were running high.
“It was my birthday so I was already excited for that,” he said. “I was excited we had a game. Then I was excited when I knew my son was coming, so it was so much to be excited for. It was a little overwhelming, but I think I handled it well.”
Mayfield was impressed by how Hyde was able to focus while on the field.
“Unbelievable. I can’t put myself in his shoes but I would imagine it’s pretty tough to have to come to work when he’s having a baby,” Mayfield said. “So tremendous amount of respect for him for doing that. He obviously rushed out of the stadium and showed up to the hospital before the baby was fully out, so happy for him. It’s an exciting time.”
Linebacker James Burgess (knee) and free safety Damarious Randall (heel) weren’t on the field for practice during the half-hour open to the media. Randall played against the Jets and Jackson said he thought he’d be OK for the Raiders game.
** Defensive ends Emmanuel Ogbah (ankle) and Myles Garrett (undisclosed) and tight end Seth DeValve (hamstring) rode stationary bikes and didn’t practice. Ogbah and DeValve have missed two straight games.
“Myles is fine,” Jackson said.
** Linebacker Christian Kirksey (ankle) returned to practice and expects to play Sunday. He missed the last two games.
Linebacker D’Juan Hines was signed to the active roster off the Chargers’ practice squad Saturday. Defensive end Ifeadi Odenigbo was waived.
** Hall of Fame wide receiver Tommy McDonald, who played the final season of his 12-year career with the Browns in 1968, died Monday morning at age 84, the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced.
** Tight end Pharaoh Brown was signed to the practice squad. He’s a native of Lyndhurst, attended Brush High, went to Oregon and played in two games with the Raiders last year.
** Tight end Pharaoh McKever was released from the practice squad.