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PREVIEW: Browns Starters Prepared To Play Against Lions

(Sports Network) - The Detroit Lions will make their first Ford Field appearance of the 2010 preseason on Saturday evening, when they welcome the Cleveland Browns to town in the third game of the warm-up period for each club.

The Lions, who are looking to rebound from a two-year stretch that has produced a combined 2-30 record, opened the preseason with a loss at the Steelers (23-7) and win at the Broncos (25-20). A 25-yard touchdown scramble by backup quarterback Drew Stanton in the closing moments gave Detroit the win in Denver last week.

But it was the play of Matthew Stafford and the first-team offense that yielded the most encouraging signs. The second-year pro completed 13-of-18 passes for 130 yards in the win, including a 20-yard touchdown pass to top wideout Calvin Johnson.

First-round rookie running back Jahvid Best, who will make his first appearance before the Ford Field faithful on Saturday night, led all rushers with eight carries for 49 yards.

The team's other 2010 first-rounder, defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, will also be making his Motor City debut on Saturday.

On the injury front for Detroit, defensive end Jared DeVries (knee) and kicker Jason Hanson (knee) are among the notables who are expected to be absent, though safety Louis Delmas (groin) could see some time after missing the first two games of the preseason.

Like the Lions, the Browns are hoping to see continued good things from their first-team offense. Quarterback Jake Delhomme has been excellent during his first preseason in a Cleveland uniform, completing 18-of-23 passes (78.3 percent) for 193 yards and a touchdown during the warm-up period.

Delhomme and the first-string should play at least the first half before yielding to backups.

Running back Montario Hardesty (knee) and ex-Lions defensive tackle Shaun Rogers (ankle) are among the Browns who are not expected to play on Saturday.

The Lions hold a 21-19-1 edge in their all-time preseason series with the Browns, but were 27-10 losers when they visited Cleveland prior to last season.

The teams also met in meaningful play last Nov. 22nd at Ford Field, a game won by Detroit, 38-37, thanks to a last second touchdown pass from Stafford to tight end Brandon Pettigrew.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.