On Tuesday, the Cleveland Browns placed rookie fullback Malcolm Johnson on injured reserve after he suffered a groin injury this past Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals. The team re-signed offensive lineman Darrian Miller to fill his roster spot.
Johnson has been the starting fullback all season, usually seeing about 25-40% of the snaps per game. Unfortunately, he ended up being a big disappointment, and I'm surprised he wasn't replaced sooner. He was consistently a liability in run blocking, and Pro Football Focus agreed, labeling him as the worst player at his position a couple of weeks ago. When I was at training camp earlier this year, I noted that Johnson was constantly missing his blocks in simple one-on-one drills.
Johnson's receiving ability was praised throughout all of training camp, but after all of that hype, he only had 4 catches for 15 yards all season. Over the final four games, the team could either try to use E.J. Bibbs at fullback, or utilize Jim Dray at the position. Neither of them are going to make much of a difference in the running game, though.
The Browns also announced a couple of practice squad moves, signing tight end Connor Hamlett and defensive back Tim Scott. They also released cornerback Kendall James from the practice squad.