Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanksi delivered some big injury news on Friday, and while it was not unexpected it did not make it any easier to hear.
A week after losing starting left tackle Jedrick Wills Jr. to injured reserve with a knee injury, Stefanski announced that the Browns will now also be without starting right tackle Dawand Jones for Sunday’s key AFC North game against the Baltimore Ravens.
Jones, who took over at right tackle in Week 1 after Jack Conklin was lost for the season, injured his right shoulder two weeks ago against the Seattle Seahawks. While he came back last week against the Arizona Cardinals, Jones injured his right knee and the combination appears to have finally caught up with him.
James Hudson III was already prepping in practice this week to step into one of the tackle slots, but the Browns now need a second tackle and figure out where Hudson and that as-yet-unnamed player fit best along the offensive line.
Stefanski would not tip his hand on Friday other than to say “We feel good about where we’re going” as the Browns wrap up preparations for the Ravens and their top-ranked defense.
The available options are:
Geron Christian, who was signed to the practice squad on October 31 and was promoted to the active roster on Tuesday. He has played in 49 career games and made 16 starts since 2018.
Leroy Watson, who was signed on November 2 from the practice squad of the San Francisco 49ers, and has yet to play in an NFL game since entering the league as an undrafted free agent in 2022.
Alex Leatherwood, who has been on the practice squad this fall and had a rocky first two seasons in the NFL.
Justin Murray, who was signed to the practice squad on Tuesday, and has played in 41 games with 20 starts since entering the league as an undrafted free agent in 2016.
Given that he has experience and was available all week for practice, it would appear that Christian is the leading candidate to start the game against the Ravens.
In other injury news, wide receivers Marquise Goodwin (concussion) and David Bell (knee) were also ruled out for the game. Cornerback Greg Newsome II (groin) is listed as questionable.