*Watch video of the Browns first practice in full uniform above.*
CLEVELAND (WJW) — The Cleveland Browns have announced their initial 53-man roster heading into the 2020 season, which kicks off this month.
In a press release issued Saturday, the team waived 24 players in order to meet the NFL roster requirements. The team said the decision on who would play was made more challenging this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We worked closely with our coaches and solicited their feedback as well as from our pro staff and our scouts. We really spent a lot of time on our roster,” said EVP of Football Operations and General Manager Andrew Berry. “Where it’s a little bit different is you don’t get the preseason games, but we feel like we had enough information, enough film to make informed decisions on all 53 guys who made the team based on the practices we had throughout this month.”
Of the 53 players, 33 are returning members of the 2019 team. The remaining 20 came to Cleveland in the following ways leading up to Saturday’s transactions: 11 via free agency, six through the 2020 NFL Draft, two via trades and one via waivers.
“We share a vision of how this team is going to play, but also, we went into this process very open-minded and wanting to keep the best 53 players,” said Head coach Kevin Stefanski. “We didn’t have any hard, fast rules of how many we were keeping at any given position. The way the roster shook out is based on the performance of those players.”
The Browns can make additional roster moves in the coming days via waiver claims and free agent signings. They’ll also look to construct a 16-man practice squad, a six-player increase from previous seasons.
“It’s very fluid,” Berry said. “It’s the first 53 but it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the final 53. Roster management is 24-7, 365 days a year. Certainly with the hundreds of players that are going to become available in the next 24 hours, we’ll always look to add depth and competition to the 53.”
The Browns are set to play the Baltimore Ravens in their first game on Sept. 13.
Breaking down the Browns’ 53-man roster by position alphabetically:
Quarterbacks (2): Case Keenum, Baker Mayfield
Running backs (3): Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt, D’Ernest Johnson
Fullbacks (1): Andy Janovich
Tight ends (5): Pharaoh Brown, Harrison Bryant, Stephen Carlson, Austin Hooper, David Njoku
Wide receivers (6): Odell Beckham Jr., Rashard Higgins, KhaDarel Hodge, Jarvis Landry, JoJo Natson, Donovan Peoples-Jones
Offensive linemen (9): Joel Bitonio, Evan Brown, Jack Conklin, Nick Harris, Chris Hubbard, Kendall Lamm, Wyatt Teller, JC Tretter, Jedrick Wills Jr.
Defensive linemen (8): Eli Ankou, Adrian Clayborn, Jordan Elliott, Myles Garrett, Porter Gustin, Larry Ogunjobi, Sheldon Richardson, Olivier Vernon
Linebackers (6): Tae Davis, B.J. Goodson, Jacob Phillips, Malcolm Smith, Sione Takitaki, Mack Wilson
Defensive backs (10): Ronnie Harrison, Kevin Johnson, Karl Joseph, Terrance Mitchell, Sheldrick Redwine, Andrew Sendejo, M.J. Stewart Jr., Tavierre Thomas, Denzel Ward, Greedy Williams
Specialists (3): Jamie Gillan, Charley Hughlett, Austin Seibert
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