Josh Gordon's unplanned start for Browns due to OC's playcall

BEREA, Ohio -- A miscommunication led to wide receiver Josh Gordon starting the season opener for the Cleveland Browns, coach Hue Jackson said Monday.

"I've dealt with it and we'll move on," said Jackson, who had vowed leading up to the opener that Gordon would not start.

The miscommunication involved the play the Browns used to open the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Offensive coordinator Todd Haley had talked with Jackson about using Gordon with the personnel for that play. Jackson was fine with the decision -- but Haley, for strategic reasons, decided to use the playcall for the first snap, and that was not expected.

The play was a pass that resulted in Tyrod Taylor scrambling for 6 yards.

Confusion arose because Gordon had missed a good part of training camp and preseason as part of his treatment for substance abuse. Jackson said the week before the game that those who had been present would start.

"I saw it just like you did," Jackson said Sunday. "Not what I wanted, but we will get through that, too."

Gordon played the first snap, then did not play the rest of the first series and the entire second series. He was in the game consistently from that point, finishing with 69 snaps, behind only Jarvis Landry among the receivers.

Jackson said the snap count did not surprise him, but he called the first snap "miscommunication" and "a mistake." He said Gordon not being on the field the rest of the first two series was also a result of personnel decisions related to playcalls.

"The game's over now," Jackson said. "So to talk about it, what's it going to do? Nothing. I've dealt with it and we'll move on."

On the 69 snaps, Gordon was targeted three times officially, with a fourth negated by a penalty on the Steelers. He had one catch for a 17-yard touchdown, which tied the score in the final two minutes of regulation. The game went to overtime and ended as a 21-21 tie.

"We got to play better offensively," Jackson said. "We got to get our skills guys going and moving the right direction."

Jackson said Taylor, who finished 15-for-40, was "not good enough." But the coach said the offense's struggles were not because of Taylor alone.

"The sentiment I'm getting here is [the problem was] him," Jackson said. "It's not. The offensive unit as a whole has got to play better."

Jackson gave an incredulous look when presented with the notion that Taylor might be on some kind "of leash" with No. 1 overall pick Baker Mayfield behind him.

"He is the quarterback," Jackson said of Taylor. "We're trying to win."

Regarding injuries, Jackson said defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah has an ankle injury that will require him to miss some games, though the coach did not provide more specifics.