Butch Davis, whose roots are as a defensive line coach, continues to stockpile former first-round D-linemen.
The latest possible reclamation project is former Packer defensive end Jamal Reynolds. The 10th overall pick of the 2001 draft, Reynolds was a bust in Green Bay. His career as a Packer got off to a bad start when he hyperextended his left knee during training camp. He eventually required microfracture surgery to regenerate cartilage after that season.
Reynolds played only seven games in 2002 as a result. He pronounced himself completely recovered last season and didn't miss any time because of injury.
But he had little impact. He played as a backup in five of the first seven games then was on the inactive list for the final nine regular-season games. The Packers traded Reynolds to Indianapolis for a seventh-round pick earlier this month, but the trade was voided when Reynolds failed his physical with the Colts. But in a statement released by the Browns when they signed him to a two-year contract Monday, Reynolds insists he's "100 percent healthy."
The Browns are used to dealing with injured defensive ends. Courtney Brown, the first overall pick of the 2000 draft, has been beset by injuries the past three seasons. He had microfracture surgery after the 2002 season and is now coming back from a ruptured biceps tendon.
Cleveland signed former Dallas first-round pick Ebenezer Ekuban as insurance
for Brown, but he has already undergone arthroscopic surgery on his right knee.
He's expected to be ready for camp, but it remains to be seen whether he'll be
That's one reason Reynolds was added.
"Jamal is a young player with potential, and we felt that it would be in the
best interest of the Cleveland Browns to give him an opportunity to earn a spot
in training camp," Davis said.
- The contract talks with the Browns won't be Kellen Winslow's only
negotiation this summer. He wants to wear No. 80 - his Hall of Fame father's
number - but that's occupied by fifth-year tight end Aaron Shea.
Shea is willing to part with the number for the right price. There's a chance Winslow won't have to pay anything because the injury-prone Shea is not a lock to make the team.
- The Browns' front-office shuffling continued this week when they fired
Todd Stewart, who'd been the team's lead spokesman since they returned to the
NFL.He was replaced by Julia Payne, who served in the Clinton White House and
as Bill Clinton's spokesman after he left office. She worked briefly for the
Redskins last year.
- QUOTE TO NOTE: "Just enough to get my daughter's college fund started," said Aaron Shea, when asked how much it would cost for Winslow to pay Shea to give him his No. 80 uniform. Shea's wife had a baby girl in April.