Cleveland Browns cut roster to 53 players

CLEVELAND, OH - AUGUST 29: Austin Seibert #2 of the Cleveland Browns kicks a field goal during the fourth quarter of the preseason game against the Detroit Lions at FirstEnergy Stadium on August 29, 2019 in Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland defeated Detroit 20-16. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Browns have trimmed their roster to 53 players ahead of their first regular season game.

The team acquired two players in trades and waived multiple players, including wide receiver Braxton Miller, who was a former Ohio State player, and Seth DeValve.

“I consider this one of the hardest days in the National Football League because you have virtually 37, 40 guys, whatever that number may be, here every day in and day out,” Browns general manager John Dorsey said. “And then the organization’s got to tell these guys you know what, they’re not going to be a part of the 53-man roster. So what I always do is try to use empathy, understanding and dignity when you kind of handle these situations. I think you have to do it that way and thank them for all they’ve done for this organization, how hard they’ve worked, how hard they’ve competed. Sometimes words can’t express how hard that transition is when you have to tell these guys that they’re no longer going to be a member of the Cleveland Browns.

Browns undrafted rookie punter Jamie Gillan, nicknamed “The Scottish Hammer,” has beaten out veteran Britton Colquitt.

Gillan won the starting job with solid performances in the past two preseason games, but it’s still surprising the Browns would take him over Colquitt, who was a Pro Bowl alternate last season and has spent nine seasons in the NFL. He won a Super Bowl ring with Denver.

With his long hair and thick Scottish accent, Gillan has quickly become a fan favorite in Cleveland. He has a booming right leg and had a 74-yard punt in an exhibition game against Indianapolis.

Colquitt played three years with the Browns, and last year set a team record with 32 punts inside the 20-yard line.

Rookie kicker Austin Seibert also made Cleveland’s roster over incumbent Greg Joseph.

Meanwhile, the Tennessee Titans traded wide receiver Taywan Taylor to the Browns before the teams open the season against each other for a 2020 draft pick.

The Titans announced the trade as they trimmed their roster to 53.

“You’re trying to upgrade the back end of your roster. That’s what you’re trying to do,” said Dorsey. “I think with Taywan Taylor he gives you an element of speed. He gives you an experienced receiver who’s been the No. 3 receiver for the Titans. (Wide receivers coach) Adam Henry will do a magnificent job of kind of getting him up to speed on how this offense is run. He’ll have a few bumps in the road in terms of learning. It’s hard to digest this whole playbook in one shot so I don’t think you shove it at him at one time.

Here are the team’s roster moves, according to their press release:

Trade 1:

Browns receive:

  • WR Taywan Taylor

Titans receive:

  • 2020 Undisclosed draft pick

Taylor was their third-round draft pick at No. 72 overall out of Western Kentucky in 2017, and the 5-foot-11, 203-pound receiver has 53 catches for 687 yards and two touchdowns in 29 games. But the speedy Taylor struggled with consistency and dropped balls.

Trade 2:

Browns receive:

  • G Justin McCray
  • 2020 Undisclosed draft pick

Packers receive:

  • 2020 Undisclosed draft pick

McCray is 6’3″ and 315 pounds. He’s in his third NFL season out of Central Florida. He originally signed with Tennessee as an undrafted free agent in 2014. He has appeared in 25 regular season games with 13 starts. Last year, he appeared in 12 games with five starts for the Packers.

Contract Terminated:

  • LB Ray-Ray Armstrong P Britton Colquitt DT Carl Davis T Bryan Witzmann

Waived:

  • WR Dorian Baker
  • DT Brandin Bryant
  • TE Stephen Carlson
  • TE Seth DeValve
  • T Brian Fineanganofo
  • RB Trayone Gray
  • LB Willie Harvey
  • S J.T. Hassell
  • WR Ishmael Hyman
  • CB Robert Jackson
  • K Greg Joseph
  • CB Donnie Lewis Jr.
  • S Montrel Meander
  • WR Braxton Miller
  • RB A.J. Ouellette
  • DE Jarrell Owens
  • CB Lenzy Pipkins
  • DT Brian Price
  • DE Wyatt Ray
  • S Tigie Sankoh
  • T Brad Seaton
  • WR Damon Sheehy-Guiseppi
  • LB Anthony Stubbs
  • T Travis Vornkahl
  • LB Dedrick Young II
  • WR Derrick Willies
  • G Willie WrightDE Anthony Zettel
  • Waived/Injured:
  • G Kyle Kalis (concussion) FB Joe Kerridge (concussion)
  • Reserve/Injured:
  • CB Phillip Gaines (concussion)

Reserve/Suspended:

  • WR Antonio Callaway RB Kareem Hunt TE Rico Gathers.

The Browns and Titans face off Sunday, September 8 at 1 p.m.

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