Rainer Blasts Davis, Browns

Wali Rainer is still angry at Butch Davis for the way he was released, and told beat reporters his opinions on Wednesday. Plus, more on Kevin Bentley, roster moves, and the latest injury report. The clock ticks down to Jacksonville...

BEREA - Former Browns linebacker Wali Rainer didn't have kind words for Browns coach Butch Davis during a conference call with Browns beat reporters Wednesday.

Rainer, now the Jaguars starting middle linebacker, doesn't think that Davis was up front with him last year. The Browns traded Rainer to the Jaguars to move up three spots in the third round of the 2002 draft.

"The main thing is that he never came to you as a player straight up and talked to me as a man, face to face," Rainer said. "That is the respect I need as a man and as a football player."

Rainer was a fourth-round draft choice in the Browns' expansion year of 1999. He started 31 combined games in 1999 and 2000, and he got the call in 14 games last season.

Davis never publicly criticized Rainer's play, although Rainer felt that the coach talked about him in secretive ways.

"When he came in, he said that if he had a problem with a player that he would directly speak to him before it got to the news," Rainer said. "I never got that respect. That kind of disappointed me."

Asked several questions about Rainer, Davis directed questioning to other areas.

"It's difficult to comment on somebody after you release him," Davis said. "The minute that we made the decision to release Wali, he was the first person we called within five minutes. We want to give you a heads-up and to say we want to talk about it.

"When you release someone, you've obviously made a decision that you want to move in a different direction. We liked Wali. He gave a good effort. As a football team, and defensively, we decided that we were going to move in a different direction."

ANXIOUS TO GO: Linebacker Kevin Bentley felt he was ready to play last week after coming back from surgery on a broken bone in his left hand, but he wasn't placed on the 45-man active roster.

Bentley suffered the injury in a game against Pittsburgh Nov. 3. Bentley had surgery the following week (a bye), and he sat out road games against Cincinnati and New Orleans.

"Last week, I honestly don't know," Bentley said when asked why he was inactive against Carolina. "To my knowledge, before I broke my hand I was playing well. I've done everything well in practice."

ROSTER MOVE: Offensive tackle Chad Mustard was signed to the practice squad. Mustard (6-foot-6, 288 pounds) played two seasons at North Dakota after completing a basketball career at the university.

Mustard played with the Omaha Beef of the National Indoor Football League. He started 13 games (10 at receiver and three at guard). He had 25 receptions for 246 yards and 12 touchdowns.

INJURY REPORT: Receiver Dennis Northcutt is doubtful with a sprained knee. Safety Devin Bush (hamstring) and cornerback Daylon McCutcheon (thumb) are questionable. Davis said that McCutcheon practiced, but he wasn't full go. Northcutt did work on a stationary bike.

Jaguars cornerback Robert Bean (hamstring) has been placed on injured reserve. Safety Donovin Darius (shoulder) is questionable. Listed as probable are tight end Kyle Brady (ankle), quarterback Mark Brunell (finger), receiver Patrick Johnson (abdomen), running back Elvis Joseph (concussion), receiver Bobby Shaw (toe) and linebacker T.J. Slaughter (ankle).

Brunell had swelling in the finger and wasn't able to practice Wednesday. If Brunell can't play Sunday, David Garrad is likely to get the call. Garrad is a rookie from East Carolina University.

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