Browns running back Duke Johnson joked after practice here Friday he's a grizzled veteran in only his third season, and lamented the fact that rookie DeShone Kizer doesn't have an experienced mentor in the quarterback room.

"For DeShone, it's growing pains as a rookie, and one thing he doesn't have is kind of that older guy in the room, the kind of veteran, the voice of reason,'' Johnson said. "I think with him going through what he's going through, it's tough for him because he doesn't have that guy that he can watch make mistakes and learn from them.

"He's the one out there that's making those mistakes and having to learn from them himself, rather than having someone in the room who he can learn from and we can put him out there and he learns from the other guy messing up, so he's taking it in stride.''

The player who fits Johnson's description to a T is Josh McCown, who was cut by the Browns and is now 3-4 as the Jets' starter this season. Two of McCown's mentees, Kevin Hogan and Cody Kessler, have tried to pass along all of his wisdom to Kizer, but it's not the same as having that player there in the heat of the moment, especially when you're getting benched midway through the game.