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Browns sign RB Brian Hill to practice squad

Cleveland finds itself in need of a running back after Nick Chubb and Demetric Felton land on COVID-19 list.

NFL: Tennessee Titans at Atlanta Falcons Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Browns found themselves in need of a healthy running back on Wednesday after placing Nick Chubb and Demetric Felton on the COVID-19 list.

To that end, Cleveland signed running back Brian Hill to the practice squad, one of several transactions on the day.

The 6-foot-1 and 216-pound Hill was a fifth-round selection by the Atlanta Falcons in the 2017 NFL Draft. He spent a short time as a rookie with the Falcons before the Cincinnati Bengals signed him off of Atlanta’s practice squad.

Hill did not make much of an impression on the Bengals, appearing in just six games and carrying the ball 11 times, and he returned to Atlanta in 2018. He played three seasons with the Falcons, rushing for 945 yards with three touchdowns and averaging 4.8 yards per carry while playing in 38 games.

He signed with the Tennessee Titans in free agency this past offseason but was released during final roster cuts.

Depending on how things go with Chubb and Felton, who because they are reportedly vaccinated need to have two negative tests 24 hours apart by 4 p.m. on Saturday to be eligible to play against the New England Patriots on Sunday. If not, D’Ernest Johnson will get the start and Hill may find himself on the gameday roster as Johnson’s backup.

Hill will be joined on the practice squad by safety Nate Meadors and wide receiver Isaiah Zuber.

NFL: AUG 29 Preseason - Vikings at Bills Photo by Gregory Fisher/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The 5-foot-11 and 189-pound Meadors originally signed with the Minnesota Vikings as an undrafted free agent out of UCLA in 2019. He played in three games with the Vikings between 2019 and 2020 before being released. He then spent nine games on the practice squad of the Jacksonville Jaguars and was on the active roster for one game.

The 5-foot-11 and 194-pound Zuber originally signed with the New England Patriots as an undrafted free agent out of Mississippi State in 2020. He spent most of last season on New England’s practice squad, but did play in four games, finishing with two catches for 29 yards and two rushes for 21 yards. The Patriots released him during final roster cuts this season and he spent time on the practice squad of the San Francisco 49ers.

Finally, Cleveland signed defensive tackle Sheldon Day and wide receiver Ja’Marcus Bradley to the active roster from the practice squad.

Day has appeared in two games this season, including Sunday’s win against the Cincinnati Bengals, posting seven tackles and half of a sack.

Bradley has been on the club’s practice squad all season. He played in three games with the Browns in 2020, finishing with five catches for 60 yards.