It looks like I was right about Tori Gurley after all.
The Browns have promoted WR Tori Gurley to the active roster from the club’s practice squad. In addition, the team waived RB Dennis Johnson.— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) September 7, 2013
This was a last second move by the Browns, just one day before the Cleveland Browns take on the Miami Dolphins. Gurley, a big wide receiver who shined in the final preseason game, will give the Browns five wide receivers on Sunday.
If you count Chris Ogbonnaya as a fullback, the Browns will be going with just two running backs: Trent Richardson and Bobby Rainey. Since both Rainey and Johnson appeared to be the favorites to return kickoffs on Sunday, this certainly seems to increase Rainey's odds of being in that role. We'll see if Johnson clears waivers; if he does, the Browns might consider putting him on the practice squad.
It would also seem to make sense that Gurley will be active against the Dolphins, otherwise there really wouldn't have been a reason to take him off the practice squad. If that is the case, this will truly be a feel-good story for Gurley, who has been cut six times over the past couple of years, but has never played in a regular season game. I talked about Joe Thomas being a guy you could root for in our season preview, but as far as the underdog who has a chance to triumph, Gurley fits the bill.
UPDATE: Brendan Leister of DraftBrowns.com made an astute observation regarding how the promotion of Gurley might actually be a telling sign of the status of cornerback Buster Skrine, who missed a couple of practices with an injury:
Gurley played gunner in preseason. Skrine usually starts at gunner. Would make sense to take Skrine off STs with his shoulder injury.— Brendan Leister (@BrendanLeister) September 7, 2013