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Browns sign WR Austin Watkins Jr.

Club in need of a camp body at the position with Marquise Goodwin and Anthony Schwartz currently sidelined.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 21 New Orleans Bowl - Appalachian State v UAB Photo by Bobby McDuffie/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns signed wide receiver Austin Watkins Jr. on Saturday.

The transaction comes as the club finds itself in need of a training camp body at the position after wide receiver Anthony Schwartz was placed on the Non-Football Injury list and wide receiver Marquise Goodwin was placed on the Non-Football Illness list while he deals with blood clots in his legs and lungs.

The 6-foot-3 and 210-pound Watkins originally signed with the San Francisco 49ers in 2021 as an undrafted free agent from the University of Alabama-Birmingham. He spent part of his rookie campaign on San Francisco’s practice squad after breaking his foot late in training camp, and a portion of the 2022 offseason program with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers but was plagued by hamstring issues.

He has yet to play in an NFL game.

Earlier this year, Watkins spent time with the Birmingham Stallions of the USFL where he had 16 receptions for 197 yards and one touchdown

That touchdown catch came on Birmingham’s first offensive play of the season as Watkins pulled in a 61-yard pass from quarterback J’Mar Smith for the score.

Watkins played in 25 games at UAB from 2018 to 2020 and finished his collegiate career with 98 receptions for 1,642 yards and nine touchdowns. His best season was in 2019 when he had 57 receptions for 1,092 yards and six touchdowns for the Blazers.

The Browns opened training camp on Saturday with the first of what can be eight practices at The Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia. They will return to Berea for the first training camp practice open to the public on August 1 and open the preseason on August 3 when they face the New York Jets in the Hall of Fame Game in Canton.