Browns Vague About Severity of Starting Defender’s Injury

Getty Images Browns safety Ronnie Harrison.

The Cleveland Browns have been intentionally vague about an injury to starting safety Ronnie Harrison Jr., causing some concern about his status going forward.

Harrison left training camp practice on Friday with what was reported to be a hamstring injury. However, head coach Kevin Stefanski did not confirm that while speaking to the media on Saturday.

“It is a lower extremity. We will do hockey terms,” Stefanski said. “He will be fine.”

That being said, Stefanski offered no timeline for a return, which makes the injury that much more concerning for a key piece of the Browns defense that has impressed early. Harrison suffered a serious shoulder injury last season that saw him miss a chunk of time and was sidelined for another game after a concussion.

Potential starting cornerback Greedy Williams and backup defensive end Takk McKinley have also had some injury issues in camp, while other players have taken planned time off due to rehab schedules.

John Johnson Impressed By Ronnie Harrison

John Johnson III: "If you don't put your best work out there you can be replaced."Safety John Johnson III addresses the media before practice on July 29, 2021. #PlayerSound2021-07-29T19:05:24Z

The Browns traded for Harrison prior to the season following an injury to rookie Grant Delpit. He started seven games for the Browns, notching 38 tackles and an interception he returned for a touchdown. He’s competing for a spot opposite of John Johnson III and the training camp time is much needed to build chemistry with his fellow defensive backs.

Johnson, who will be the leader among the defensive backs, has had nothing but good things to say about both Harrison and Delpit.

“Both of those guys are smart players. Everyone knows that they can do everything. You can move them all around, versatile and athletes. I think the thing is just the work ethic,” Johnson told reporters this week. “Grant sitting back from that injury, and he is going to be a big part of the defense this year. Ronnie is just exceptional. I do not know how a team did not lock him in for a long time. Hopefully, that will happen. We are just going to go out there and have fun. Hopefully, all three of us can put in a lot of work for the team.”

Harrison is entering the final year of his contract and can become an unrestricted free agent next offseason if the Browns don’t work out an extension before then.

Browns Coach Joe Woods Says Harrison Looks Different

As evident by Johnson’s comments, Harrison has entered this season looking sharp. During minicamp, Harrison was barely recognizable on tape to defensive coordinator Joe Woods.

“With Ronnie, I was watching film yesterday. I said, ‘Who’s that guy in the post?’ They said, ‘That’s Ronnie.’ ‘Ronnie?’ Just in terms of what he’s done so far, working on his movement skills, bending more in his back pedal, he looks like a different guy,” Woods said. “And he has a natural feel when he’s in the box, so I think he’s set up to have a really good year for us.”

Hopefully, Harrison can get back on the field and pick up right where he left off.

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