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Signs point to Browns targeting wideouts more in 2011

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Posted Jan. 15, 2011 @ 9:27 p.m. ET
By Mike Wilkening

At new head coach Pat Shurmur's introductory press conference, Browns president Mike Holmgren made it clear the team will look to get the wide receivers more involved in the offense. "What has to improve is, I think, our ability to throw the ball and our utilization of our wide receivers," he said. Shurmur, the Rams' offensive coordinator the last two seasons, will call the plays initially. As a point of comparison, Rams wide receivers were targeted on 65.1 percent of St. Louis' pass plays in 2010. By contrast, Browns wide receivers were targeted on 47.7 percent of pass plays this season. Granted, this comparison is imperfect, for it doesn't account for plays where tight ends were split out as wide receivers and game situations (whether a team was ahead or trailing, etc.), among other factors. Also, the Rams threw only a slightly higher percentage of passes to wide receivers than the Browns did in 2009 (58.4 percent to 57.6 percent). Nonetheless, considering the data and Holmgren's comments, it's logical to think the Browns are likely to target wideouts more in Shurmur's system.

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