The pressure is on -- who will make the final cut for the Cleveland Browns?
Since my previous roster projection for the Cleveland Browns, a lot of moves were made to get the roster down to 75 players. After the jump, my third roster projection has been updated to reflect the cuts, injury-related moves, and more. I will have one final roster projection immediately following this Thursday's preseason game against the Bears.
Already on PUP: DT Phil Taylor
Already on IR: LB Chris Gocong, LB Emmanuel Acho, FB Eddie Williams
Projected Suspension List: LB Scott Fujita
Listed below is what has changed since the last time. Any position not listed did not have any changes.
General Roster Projection Notes
- Running Back: I moved RB Chris Ogbonnaya to the active roster, keeping four running backs for the first time in my roster projections. There is just too big of a question mark at this position due to the injury concerns. Trent Richardson has missed most of camp after having his knee cleaned up. Montario Hardesty had some soreness the other day, and Brandon Jackson did not play all of last year. Ogbonnaya has been slowed by an ankle injury, but I think he'll stick around until Richardson shows he is good-to-go.
- Fullback / Tight End: Based on the preseason, it has become apparent that TE Alex Smith is still valued heavily by the coaching staff. I won't budge and get rid of Evan Moore, so that makes rookie seventh-round pick Brad Smelley expendable and headed for the practice squad.
- Offensive Line: OT Oniel Cousins has really struggled in camp; you can see why the Ravens cut him outright last year. After being slowed by an injury over the past week or so, he could be headed for the same path. Against the Packers, OL John Greco showed his versatility by playing some left tackle -- he looked a lot better than Cousins there. I tried to look at each of the other lineman during Colt McCoy's drive, and OG Stanley Daniels, who has made a couple of starts with Denver in the past, caught my eye the most. Therefore, I swapped Cousins and Daniels.
- Defensive Line: DE Marcus Benard was moved to the "waived" side after the team waived/injured him on Monday. With Auston English also waived, I don't see another defensive end who has made a splash. I think it says something that despite being bothered by an injury the past few weeks, the team did not placed DT Scott Paxson on the waived/injured list. With Phil Taylor officially on the PUP, the Browns may want to carry five defensive tackles to keep the rotation fresh up front. Paxson had replaced Benard in this version.
- Linebacker: LB Emmanuel Acho was placed on injured reserve. This position looks really thin, and I don't know if Cleveland would really go into the season with just five linebackers. This is something that could change based on who I see playing in the Bears game. Their sixth linebacker, Scott Fujita, won't count toward the roster for the first three games.
- Cornerback / Safety: I added CB Johnson Bademosi to the practice squad, removing English from the practice squad in the process.
Feel free to tell me any changes you would make to the list in the comments section below!