There was encouraging news on the Courtney Brown injury front Monday.
The defensive end has begun straightahead jogging. Coach Butch Davis is pleased with what he's seen of Brown, who sprained his right knee Aug. 31, but he isn't prepared to say when Brown will return.
"I was watching Courtney do some things, and it was far and away the most encouraged I've been by him," Davis said. "As you would expect, he's doing a knockout job in the rehab. He's lifting and starting to jog a little bit."
Another defensive linemen who's getting close to returning from an injury is tackle Marcus Spriggs, who broke a bone in his left arm early in training camp. Spriggs worked with the team Monday and could be cleared for contact next week. The Jacksonville game Sept. 30 is a possible target date for his return.
Davis surprised reporters when he revealed that offensive guard Tre Johnson had surgery on a finger last week. Johnson would have been able to play last week if the games had been played.
Receiver Dennis Northcutt is seven to 10 days from returning, Davis said. Northcutt has a bruised clavicle.
There is one spot to fill on the roster since the release of offensive lineman Terrence Sykes. Davis indictaed that a player probably will be activated from the practice squad.