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Browns activate B.J. Goodson from Reserve/COVID-19 list

Veteran linebacker has missed the past two games and the defense has struggled in his absence.

Washington Football Team v Cleveland Browns Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns actually received some good news on Wednesday as the team activated linebacker B.J. Goodson from the Reserve/COVID-19 list.

Goodson missed the final two games of the regular season after testing positive and taking down several players with him as high-risk, close contacts.

Goodson, who is in his first season with the Browns after signing as a free agent, leads the team with 91 tackles and is in a three-way tie for the team lead in interceptions with two.

Perhaps more importantly, Goodson is responsible for getting the play call from defensive coordinator Joe Woods and having everyone on defense in the right position. The Browns have missed that in Goodson’s absence, most notably in Week 16 against the New York Jets when they allowed three touchdowns on plays where the New York receiver was wide open because of blown coverages.

While Goodson’s return is the headline, the Browns also made a move along the offensive line by signing center Anthony Fabiano.

The 6-foot-4 and 300-pound Fabiano was originally signed as an undrafted free agent by the Baltimore Ravens in 2016. He did not make Baltimore’s final roster that year and the Browns signed him to their practice squad, but he was promoted to the active roster for the final four games of the season, making one start.

The Browns waived Fabiano at the end of training camp in 2017, and he bounced around that season from Washington to the New York Giants, New England Patriots and finally the Indianapolis Colts, where he appeared in five games, making one start.

He was back for training camp with the Browns in 2018, but was cut and then spent part of the season on the practice squad the Philadelphia Eagles. The 2019 season saw Fabiano spend time on the practice squads of both the Eagles and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and he spent a few weeks in December of 2020 on the practice squad of the Green Bay Packers.

Fabiano is expected to serve as the backup to center JC Tretter as the Browns placed rookie center Nick Harris on injured reserve earlier this week with a knee injury.