The Cleveland Browns activated four players - including two key starters - on Thursday from the Reserve/COVID-19 list as they continue preparations for Monday night’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Returning to the Browns are center JC Tretter, cornerback Greg Newsome II, defensive tackle Jordan Elliott and kicker Chase McLaughlin.
We've activated the following players from reserve/COVID-19 and made additional roster moves— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) December 30, 2021
- DT Jordan Elliott
- K Chase McLaughlin
- CB Greg Newsome II
- C JC Tretter
Tretter joins left tackle Jedrick Wills Jr., who was activated on Monday, to return the offensive line to having four of its five starters back on the field.
Likewise, Elliott joins defensive tackle Malik McDowell, who was activated on Monday, in providing a boost to the defensive tackle rotation.
Finally, in addition to coming off the COVID list, Newsome has also cleared the league-mandated concussion protocols that have kept him out of the past three games.
With the Browns needing to win their final two games, and get some outside help, to make the playoffs, getting players back on the practice field comes at a good time, head coach Kevin Stefanski said on Thursday (quote via a team-provided transcript):
“Getting guys back from injury and getting guys back off the COVID list, it is always good to work them back in and see where they are. I think that is important with all these guys that are coming back. We need to put our eyes on them, put them through workouts, put them through rehab, see where they are and then plan their role accordingly.”
With today’s transactions, the Browns are down to just a handful of players on the Reserve/COVID-19 list:
- safety Tedric Thompson
- offensive tackle Alex Taylor
- linebacker Elijah Lee
- linebacker Tony Fields II
- quarterback Nick Mullens
In addition to the players coming off of the COVID list, the Browns might be getting additional reinforcements before Monday. While running back Kareem Hunt (ankle injury), cornerback Troy Hill (knee injury), safety John Johnson III (hamstring injury) and defensive tackle Malik Jackson (knee injury) did not practice, Stefanski said he is ruling any of them out for the Pittsburgh game.