Berea Report: Banged-Up Browns Get Ready

The Browns are nursing all kinds of aches and pains, but were back out on the practice field today. Among them was RB Reuben Droughns who didn't practice, but could at least dispense with a foot immobilizing boot while he watched...

Reuben Droughns missed practice Wednesday because of a foot injury suffered in the game in Atlanta last week. The injury did not knock him out of the game, but when he awakened Monday his foot was swollen.

Coach Romeo Crennel said Droughns was wearing an immobilizing boot. He discarded the boot for practice and although he watched from the sideline it was encouraging to see him wearing shoes instead of the boot.

Jason Wright and Jerome Harrison are sharing practice time while Droughns watches. Wright would likely start with Harrison assuming backup duties. Wright has 18 carries for 39 yards this season. Harrison has 12 carries for 39 yards.

"I'm always on alert because you never know," Wright said. "Anything can happen in the middle of the game, so it isn't really a factor. I'm going to know all my assignments."

Wright started against the Ravens in the third week of the season because Droughns missed the game with a shoulder injury. He carried 15 times for 31 yards. Wright said the Steelers and Ravens both play a physical defense that leaves the player sore the next day.

Crennel on Thursday and Friday will get a better read on Droughns' chances of playing against the Steelers. Droughns is not having a great season. He does not seem to be cutting as sharply as he did last year. He has rushed for 472 yards on 153 carries. A foot injury could make him less effective than he is already.

Other injuries

Linebackers Willie McGinest and Leon Williams were forced to sit out practice Wednesday. Both have ankle injuries. They had ankle injuries last week but played against the Falcons.

Williams played in the nickel defense against the Falcons. Matt Stewart would start if McGinest cannot play.

Frye is ready

Charlie Frye has a sore left wrist. Fortunately, it is not on his throwing hand. Frye was sacked eight times on Christmas Eve when the Steelers pounded the Browns 41-0. Steelers coach Bill Cowher does not think it will be as easy Sunday.

"The difference is like night and day," Cowher said in a conference call from Pittsburgh.

Frye said he will be more ready Sunday. The Christmas Eve game was his fourth career start. Frye has made 10 starts since then. He said the experience helps. So does changing the blocking schemes.

"I'm a lot different than I was then," Frye said. "I've been improving every week. I'm looking guys off. I'm putting the ball where I want it - the little things it takes to play quarterback."

Frye has been sacked plenty this year, but never eight times. The most he was sacked in a game was seven times by the Ravens in the third game.

The OBR Top Stories