The Browns have signed RB Montario Hardesty, one of their two second-round picks, the team announced Monday. The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reported that the contract is for four seasons.
Hardesty is expected to be an important part of the offense in his first season and will compete with Jerome Harrison for the starting job. Hardesty, 23, ran for 1,345 yards and 13 TDs as a senior at Tennessee.
In PFW's 2010 Draft Preview, personnel analyst Nolan Nawrocki wrote that the 6-foot, 225-pound Hardesty "runs behind his pads, bounces off tacklers and picks up a lot of yards after contact" but "takes time to build speed and lacks top-end speed."
CB Joe Haden, the Browns' first-round pick, and S T.J. Ward, their other second-round selection, are Cleveland's only unsigned drafted rookies.
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