BEREA – The Browns middle linebacker won't be Barry Gardner.
Coach Butch Davis announced after Monday's practice that Andra Davis has been moved to the first team at middle linebacker. Gardner had been working there, but he'll now compete with Ben Taylor on the weak side.
Gardner struggled throughout camp and made little impact against the run in the two preseason games. Davis has been more of a force against the run. He also helpd his cause with an interception last Saturday against Green Bay.
"Andra has played very solid," Butch said. "In the 20 or so plays he gets, he's getting three, four or five tackles. We think he'll be the guy. There's no reason to think right now that he won't be. We want to make sure we get the three best guys in the starting lineup."
Strong safety Robert Griffith will have the cast removed from his right hand this week. If the bone he broke Aug. 1 has healed, he could play against Detroit.
"They'll find out how much healing has taken place, and they'll put an entirely new cast on his hand, one that will come near resembling the one he'll be asked to play in."
Linebacker Chaun Thompson and cornerback Michael Lehan are wearing protective boots. Thompson suffered a minor knee injury against the Packers. Lehan went down with a calf injury. It's doubtful either will play in Detroit.
As a result of numerous bumps and bruises, Butch held about 15 players out of Monday's practice.
Running back Lee Suggs failed his physical. Suggs, who signed a contract last week, had surgery to repair a rotator cuff in May. He was on the practice field Monday to observe drills.
Receiver Andre Davis practiced for the first time since he injured his right knee on the second day of full-squad workouts. He's being monitored on a daily basis. Butch said it's unlikely that Davis will play against the Lions.
There are no immediate plans to move rookie Chris Crocker from free safety to cornerback. Crocker played both spots at Marshall University but has been projected to corner in the NFL. Crocker is the backup nickel back and is on the first team in the dime package (six defensive backs).
Butch continues to defend the play of defensive tackle Gerard Warren, who failed to register a tackle in either preseason game.
"Down at the goal line, he had some unbelievable penetrations," Butch said. "You can't always measure statistically. The potential sack Kenard (Lang) had against Tennessee. He hit Steve McNair almost flush in the face. The only way he did that is Gerard split a double team and took the guard and tackle back and set a corner he couldn't escape. Kenard was totally unblocked."