In a somewhat surprising move, the Cleveland Browns waived veteran center Hank Fraley on Wednesday. With Rex Hadnot set to test the free agent market on Friday, the Browns will be thin at the backup guard and backup center positions heading into free agency.
Fraley, who saw spot action at guard last season, was generally considered a team captain and locker room leader. It's not necessarily a huge loss for the Browns, but with his versatility and experience, I didn't see any problem with keeping him for another season. With the tremendous season that rookie center Alex Mack had last season though, I guess the front office was ready to move on.
Fraley was quite surprised by the move, as he told the OBR:
“I was talking with the Browns at the end of the season and was feeling pretty good that I would be a Brown again,” Fraley said while traveling in New Jersey. “It caught me off guard. I just have to pick up and move on.”
According to ESPN, Fraley doesn't plan on calling it a career just yet and will see what teams are interested in him in free agency:
"I definitely want to keep playing for two or three more years," he said. "My body feels great and I feel fresh mentally. I'm not ready to walk away from the game."
As another brief note, Joshua Cribbs has announced that he will hold a public press conference at the I-X Center's Auto Show this Friday. The Plain Dealer speculates that he will announce a deal has been reached.