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Browns' Injury Front Critical Against Jets

With Gary Baxter done for the season, we want to finally see some increased playing time for a guy like Antonio Perkins, right? Well, I guess we should have seen this coming due to his lack of playing time, as the Browns waived Perkins on Saturday. Perkins was a fourth-round draft pick last year by Phil Savage and company. Despite all of our cornerback issues this season, he has only really seen action on special teams.

With the extra roster spot, the Browns signed rookie offensive lineman Fred Matua. Matua, who attended college at USC, was drafted in the seventh round of this year's draft by the Detroit Lions. The Lions cut him in training camp, and then he was signed to the Tennessee Titans' practice squad. The Browns needed depth on the offensive line due to the mysterious illness to Ryan Tucker, who will not play this week.

The illness involving Tucker became even more mysterious after hearing that he may possibly be out for the remainder of the season. At least for this week, Kelly Butler will make his first start with the Cleveland Browns. Shockingly, this will be the first time that a different starter will be on our offensive line this season. Butler has experience too - he started in all 16 games for the Detroit Lions last year.

On the defensive side of the ball, the string is still out on Leigh Bodden. Bodden is still recovering from a high ankle sprain, which is what kept him out of last week's game against the Denver Broncos. Bodden wants to return this Sunday, especially since not having him in the lineup would put pressure on our inexperienced secondary again. He has missed portions of practiced. Also missing portions of practice is Dennis Northcutt, but there's a chance that he'll be able to play. I know that people are still mad at him for his caused interception against Carolina, but there's no doubt that he would help us on punt returns. And, if Jeff Davidson turns out to be a dream coordinator, he'd actually use Northcutt in the slot, where he's most effective as a receiver with his shiftiness.

Supposedly, the addition of Davidson as the coordinator has lifted spirits in Berea and raised the tempo of the players. That sounds great, but what else are the Browns going to say? After making a move, of course you have to defend it. Savage and Crennel would sound ridiculous if they said that things looked "down" after Carthon's firing, or if they said that the offense was having trouble getting used to Davidson's play calling. There's only one true way to tell if the move has helped the Browns - by watching the Jets take on the Browns at 4:05 PM on Sunday. The Jets have a porous run defense, which should allow Davidson to be more flexible in his play calling, especially off of playaction.