Hardesty Carries Rushing Load For Browns
Not much worked for the Cleveland Browns on offense Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks but it wasn't Montario Hardesty's fault.
Hardesty set career-highs in rushing attempts (33) and rushing yards (95) to help the Browns even their record at 3-3 with a grind-it-out 6-3 victory over the Seahawks.
With bruiser and starting running back Peyton Hillis off to a slow start with injuries, Hardesty leads Cleveland with 238 rushing yards. His 33 rushing attempts against the seahawks were the most by a Brown since Jerome Harrison had 33 in the season finale of the 2009 season against Jacksonville on January 3, 2010.
Hardesty also had a pair of receptions for 27 yards.
"I think this game just showed, I'm a guy that wants to win," Hardesty said. "I'm going to do everything I can to win and I would like the ball in my hands to help the team win. I'm a little sore right now, but during the game, you had that adrenaline.
"I didn't think about being tired; that was the last thing on my mind. I just wanted to keep going, keep going for my team. I felt like the guys were getting encouraged by the way we were running the ball."
First-year Browns coach Pat Shurmur said Hardesty will keep getting carries, even when Hillis returns from a hamstring injury. Hillis was inactive for Sunday's game after being injured in the Cleveland's loss to the Oakland Raiders last week.
"He played like a starting running back and he battled," Shurmur said of Hardesty. "He wasn't perfect. I'm sure he's going to be sore tomorrow, but yes, I think, for the time being, he's earned the right to carry the football and we're going to welcome Peyton back when he's healthy and hopefully, we can keep building on that."
Establishing a running game will help second-year quarterback Colt McCoy and the rest of the offense as it learns Shurmur's West Coast style attack.
Against Seattle, Cleveland managed only a pair of 50-yard field goals by Phil Dawson but it was enough to win.
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