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Browns offensive line may be challenged by more than Saints defense

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Tackles Desmond Harrison and Chris Hubbard face obstacles of a different nature.

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers at Cleveland Browns Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

The offensive line of the Cleveland Browns faces another strong test this weekend when the team takes on the New Orleans Saints.

The most notable challenge will come on the right side of the line, where tackle Chris Hubbard, looking to bounce back from a rough opening day, will take on defensive end Cameron Jordan, who posted 13 sacks last season on his way to his third Pro Bowl and a first-team All-Pro selection.

Cleveland head coach Hue Jackson said the matchup is one of the reasons why the Browns signed Hubbard in free agency, according to clevelandbrowns.com:

“That is why we brought Hubbard here. He has to get these guys blocked, and obviously, there are some things we will do to assist as much as we can, but his No. 1 job is the blocking.”

It will not only be the Saints defense that the Browns will have to contend with on Sunday. The Superdome can be one of the league’s louder venues, and that amplified noise can make it tricky for the line to pick up protection calls and changes as the play clock ticks down.

That might be particularly true for rookie Desmond Harrison, who apparently did not have to deal with domes in the Gulf South Conference while playing at West Georgia, as Jackson told the team’s website:

“It is going to be a little new for him up here at this level as loud as it can be, playing against the types of rushers that he plays against. That is why we practice all week – put him in position so he can have success.”

While it was not all the fault of the offensive line that quarterback Tyrod Taylor was sacked seven times and hit another 10 times in last week’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the line continues to have problems when it comes to passing off rushers to one another, which did contribute to Taylor taking some of those hits.

The more time they spend practicing and playing as a unit will help, but another rough day from the offensive line against the Saints will turn into another long afternoon for Taylor.