BEREA – The Browns hoped that the injury plague of last season ended with the end of the campaign.
They thought wrong.
Rookie safety Sean Jones, who impressed coaches and players during minicamp and quarterback school, tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee during a practice last Tuesday. Jones is scheduled to have surgery June 22 and will likely miss the season.
"I'm just taking it day by day," Jones said when asked if he's counting himself out for the season. "I'll do everything I can just to get back."
The injury occurred when Jones ran a long ways to intercept a pass intended for Dennis Northcutt. After the two collided, Jones grabbed his knee in pain.
Coach Butch Davis apparently considers the injury a crushing blow.
"We were very pleased with what he had done," Davis said. "He was learning and adjusting like all of the rookies. He was doing a good job."
Jones flashed his speed on the play in which he was injured, racing across the field to make the interception.
"The play he made when he got hurt was a great play," receiver Quincy Morgan said. "That shows you what type of athlete he is. He was almost on the other hash. He ran all the way to the numbers on the other side of the field, up field, and made the interception. He got hurt on a great play. It's unfortunate that we're not going to be able to have him."
TALKING ABOUT TIM: Players are supportive of quarterback Tim Couch, who is about to be released.
"He's a good player, but if you have three years in a row where you're constantly getting sacked, it can get into your head," Morgan said. "It's hard to stay focused when you can't stay in the pocket and read the coverage.
Morgan believes that the demotion from the starting role hurt Couch emotionally.
"He can say he wasn't (hurt emotionally), but he was," Morgan said. "Tim is a team player and a good sport, but it took a lot out of him. The fans turning their back on him took a lot out of him. That will do it to a man."
Kelly Holcomb threw 64 passes during his last throwing day. The longest of the throws covered about 40 yards, but they weren't on a line.
"You'd like to go into camp where it's healed and you don't worry about it," Holcomb said. "You can't think, ‘This throw right here is going to hurt my arm.' "
ALSO: Tight end Keith Heinrich has his left foot in a walking boot. Heinrich broke the fibula during a practice last week.
Because the regular season doesn't begin until Sept. 12, Browns veterans won't begin practices until Friday, July 30. Rookies will begin three days earlier. Practices won't be open to the public until July 30.