For those of you who have been reading our posts on transactions made by the Cleveland Browns recently, one little detail has been driving us nuts: even though press releases would claim that the team's roster was set at 90 players, the team's roster page for about a month now has been listing 91 players (not including suspended WR Josh Gordon).
Today, the mystery has been solved.
It started with me doing a search on Twitter for NFL salary cap space, where someone noted that the Kansas City Chiefs had 92 contracts. My curiosity led me the NFLPA salary cap report to see that a number of teams have over 90 contracts. In the Chiefs' case, this is because S Eric Berry has yet to sign his franchise tag, and LB Tautvydas Kieras is on injured reserve after being waived/injured earlier this month.
Those would be possible reasons for the Browns' roster appearing to be above 90 players. Of the teams that had 90+ contracts on the NFLPA site, though, the Browns were not one of them -- they were listed at 90 players.
The NFLPA site has a database that allows media members to search for base salaries, and it is kept up-to-date. I thought to myself, "well, I'm going to search for every player listed on the Browns' roster until one of my searches returns, 'no results found.'" About halfway down the list, I found the culprit: OL Darrian Miller.
On April 26th, just a couple of days before the draft, the transaction went a little under-the-radar, as Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle tweeted that the Browns withdrew their exclusive rights free agent tender from the offensive lineman:
Browns withdrew their minimum tender offer to Darrian Miller, withdrawing the club's rights to him— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) April 26, 2016
As for why the Browns.com roster page kept causing confusion, nobody has removed Miller's name from the page:
And there you have it. I will tag a few of the Browns.com writers in the tweet we send out to see if we can get Miller's name removed from the roster page to prevent further confusion.
UPDATE (2:00 PM): We don't know how quickly it happened, but less than two hours later, Miller's name was removed from the Browns.com roster page. Thanks to whoever did it!