In a shocking move, the Cleveland Browns released starting left tackle Greg Robinson on Sunday — just a week before the team’s first game of the season against the Tennessee Titans.
However, the move appears to be just a procedural maneuver and Robinson — the second overall pick in the 2014 draft — should be officially back with the team soon, according to multiple reports.
The move was made to reportedly sign the team’s trio of waiver wire pickups, which were tight end Ricky Seals-Jones (Arizona Cardinals), linebacker Malik Jefferson (Cincinnati Bengals) and receiver KhaDarel Hodge.
Robinson was due a 5.5 million salary and Robinson had a cap number of $7 million, according to Pro Football Talk.
Michael Ginnitt of Spotrac said the move “initially clears $6.4M of cap space for the Browns, who will likely sign him back at a slightly smaller salary after Week 1 to avoid a guarantee.”
While no team can claim him on waivers, there is a risk that he could bolt if a team really like him and swooped in with a bigger deal. But it has to be assumed that the Browns and Robinson came to some type of handshake agreement that they would make this situation work before pulling it off.
Robinson started the final eight games last season for the Browns and re-upped on a one-year deal in the offseason.
The team did also waive defensive tackle Trevon Coley and safety Juston Burris and don’t plan to resign either. The team also moved OL Drew Forbes, who has a knee injury, to injured reserve.
Browns Beef Up Offensive Line With Trades
Robinson has occupied the starting spot at left tackle, but the Browns have had problems finding a solution at right guard, which the team tried to remedy with a trade just before their final preseason game.
General manager John Dorsey decided to trade for Bills second-year guard Wyatt Teller.
“Anytime he goes in the game, he brings a toughness to it, I think he plays with good technique most of the time and I think he gives us some depth at the position in the short term,” Kitchens said following the trade.
The right guard spot had been a major problem the Browns have been trying to sort out all preseason, with 2018 second-round pick Austin Corbett failing to live up to expectations.
Eric Kush has been penciled in to the start role for most of the preseason, and it was assumed the Browns were ready to roll with the seventh-year journeyman. Kush has 12 starts in his career, the majority of those coming with the Bears last season, where he was in the starting lineup seven times.
Kitchens told reporters on Friday that Kush was still the starting right guard, but that it’s a competition — something the first-year skipper has repeatedly said leading up to the season.
“Eric is our right guard as we speak, but we haven’t even had Wyatt on the field yet,” Kitchens said. “My first inkling would be to say yes, but we haven’t seen [Teller] on the field yet. We still have four practices to get through. We will see where it all goes. Even though training camp has ended, there is always competition. There is always going to be competition while I am here. I think you get the most out of everybody when you run it that way.”
It’s a messy situation, especially with the Robinson situation now mucking things up further.
Browns Practice Squad Signings
The Browns did make some other moves to bulk up their practice squad on Sunday. The team signed: defensive tackle Brandin Bryant, tight end Stephen Carlson, wide receiver Shelton Gibson, linebacker Willie Harvey, safety J.T. Hassell, cornerback Robert Jackson, wide receiver Derrick Willies, center Willie Wright and defensive back Tigie Sankoh.
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