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NFL Roster Cuts: Browns Place RB Montario Hardesty on IR, FB Owen Marecic Waived

David Richard-US PRESSWIRE

The Cleveland Browns announced a bunch of moves today in order to get their roster down to 75 players. Usually, the first batch of cuts doesn't involve a whole lot of surprises, but that wasn't the case for Rob Chudzinski's first year as head coach.

The biggest surprise? RB Montario Hardesty's season is over, as he was placed on injured reserve, despite having an injury that was only expected to keep him out for two-three games. Also, FB Owen Marecic, the team's fourth-round draft pick several years ago, was released. A full listing of the moves announced today are below.

Browns Placed on Injured Reserve

  • RB Montario Hardesty - This is a pretty big surprise. Early in training camp, I thought there was a serious chance that Hardesty could be cut, due to the emergence of Dion Lewis. Hardesty then had knee surgery, which had an estimated timetable of a Week 2-3 return. Lewis broke his leg, though, and Brandon Jackson hadn't had a lot of success running the ball. The Browns might be in the market for acquiring a running back now that Hardesty is out of the mix. This was the final year of his rookie contract, so he probably won't be brought back in 2014.

  • OT Chris Faulk - This was expected all along. Faulk was labeled as one of the best undrafted free agents available when the Browns nabbed him, but it was pretty much understood that he still needed a lot of time to rehab. He'll get that time over the next few months, and he can have his "real" rookie season next year.

Browns Waived on Tuesday

  • FB Owen Marecic - So long, Marecic. At least he went out with a bang, making a diving catch and rolling around on the ground, before getting up and plowing forward for a few more yards last week against the Colts. Marecic goes down as an awful fourth-round pick in terms of contributions -- he couldn't catch and couldn't block.He'll be replaced by RB Chris Ogbonnaya at the position this year.

  • WR Dominique Croom - I am very surprised that WR Mike Edwards was not on this list. Croom stood out in the preseason games by making several highlight-reel leaping catches. Besides Edwards, WR Tori Gurley remains on the roster despite not getting any receiver snaps last week.

  • TE Travis Tannahill - He saw the least amount of action at tight end during the preseason, so we never really had a chance to evaluate him either way. Still, he wasn't expected to make the team.

  • OT Ryan Miller - A fifth-round pick by the Browns in 2012, I expected Miller to be placed on injured reserve since he's pretty much missed all of camp with a concussion. Instead, the team decided to part ways with him, solidifying the fact that veteran OT Rashad Butler will have a spot on this team.

  • OT Dominic Alford - Alford was waived once this offseason again, and then brought back when Miller went down. It's not a surprise to see him go again, since he was brought in purely as a "camp body."

  • NT Nicholas Jean-Baptiste - Like Tannahill, Jean-Baptiste saw very few reps during the preseason, and never stood a chance to compete with backup nose tackle Ishmaa'ily Kitchen like I expected him to. Jean-Baptiste was a Baylor teammate of Phil Taylor's.

  • OLB Kendrick Adams - He made the transition from DL to OLB this year and did see a fair amount of playing time in the preseason, but he rarely stood out despite that.

Browns Waived/Terminated Earlier in the Week

Note: our thoughts on the players below can be found here.

  • WR Jordan Norwood
  • WR Cordell Roberson
  • DL Dave Kruger
  • LB Tommy Smith
  • CB Vernon Kearney

The Browns also claimed two players off waivers -- P Colston Schmidt from the 49ers, and OLB Paul Hazel from the Jaguars. More information on each of those players can be found here. In the mean time, leave your reactions to the latest batch of cuts in the comments section below.

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