The Cleveland Browns welcomed offensive lineman Drew Forbes back to practice on Thursday.
Forbes has been on injured reserve since injuring his knee against the Detroit Lions in the final preseason game. The Browns have now designated him for return from the injured reserve list and have 21 days to decide if the rookie is worthy of a roster spot.
If the club decides to activate him, Forbes will be eligible to return for the November 10 home game against the Buffalo Bills. If not, he will remain on injured reserve for the remainder of the season.
Forbes was a sixth-round selection by the Browns in the 2019 NFL Draft after being a three-year starter at left tackle for Southeast Missouri State and a first-team Ohio Valley Conference selection his senior year.
Much like Austin Corbett, who was traded on October 15 to the Los Angeles Rams, many talent evaluators viewed Forbes as a guard at the NFL level - except for the Browns, according to Kalyn Kahler of The Monday Morning Quarterback. Cleveland was the only team that told Forbes that a position switch may not be in his future, as general manager John Dorsey explained to Kahler following the draft:
“He’s got incredible athleticism, so why not try him at left or right tackle? If that doesn’t work, then move inside, I mean that’s how you do the offensive line. Let them see what their natural position is and then move forward. He is a very athletic and talented guy who is mature, tenacious, and smart.”
Despite saying that, the Browns had Forbes work mostly at guard throughout training camp and the preseason, so where he will eventually line up remains unclear.
However, with Wyatt Teller already pushing right guard Eric Kush for the starter’s role and guard Joel Bitonio on lockdown on the left side of the line, Forbes could be an option to put some pressure on struggling right tackle Chris Hubbard.