Last July, Cleveland Browns defensive end Desmond Bryant tore a pectoral muscle. Nearly a year later, he’s back.
Bryant took part in Wednesday’s OTA session open to the media, and according to Browns.com, it is the first practice he’s participated in since that devastating injury. For anyone who wondered whether Bryant might be expendable given the team’s investment in youth across the defensive line this year, head coach Hue Jackson certainly made the veteran feel wanted:
“Desmond was one of my favorites from Oakland [in 2011]. It was disappointing we didn’t have him this past year. I thought he was one of the missing links on our football team. He’s a veteran player, knows how to play, is extremely tough, extremely bright, and loves football. Having him back has been good.
Now, we’re going to ease him back into this because he hasn’t been around us. He’s back in the weight room, back on the practice field, working on some individual things. We’ll get him back to where he needs to be. When I think of him, and the rest of our front seven -- potentially what it could be -- that’s exciting. For him to go back and be the player he was, it's going to give us a huge boost. We didn't have him at all a year ago, and I think he's going to be a good player for us.”
Bryant has financial motivation to return to form in 2017. Last September, in addition to reducing his 2016 salary while injured, he restructured his 2017 deal with the club. This year, his base salary is $3 million, none of which is guaranteed. He can make $4 million in incentives. It has not been reported what those incentives are, but it would not be surprising if they are easily attainable incentives, possibly number of games played.