Browns Give Troubling Update on Deshaun Watson’s Chances of Facing 49ers

Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson did not practice on Monday.

Getty Images Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson did not practice on Monday.

The bye week came and went for the Cleveland Browns and quarterback Deshaun Watson is still not ready to get on the practice field.

The Browns have expressed confidence in Watson playing against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday but the Cleveland quarterback not being on the practice field Monday was a bit concerning. Watson missed the Browns’ 28-3 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on October 1 with a shoulder injury.

“I’m going to just stay with day to day,” Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said on Monday, October 9. “I don’t want to get too far into the week. I would tell you he’s working very, very hard. He’s doing everything that he’s asked to do and getting better.”

Watson’s absence in the matchup against the Ravens created some controversy, with Stefanski revealing that his quarterback was medically cleared to play but made the decision to sit out after testing out his shoulder on Sunday prior to the game. He expressed confidence in Watson being able to make that decision.

“I think the piece there that’s important is medically cleared versus functionally able to do your job and I think that’s what with all of our guys, when you’re working through an injury, you need to be able to functionally perform and that’s what Deshaun’s working very hard in his rehab to be able to get back to 100 percent,” Stefanski said.

Browns Still Confident Watson’s Injury Won’t be Long-Term

The Browns have been clear that the shoulder has not sustained any structural damage and that they don’t expect it to be a long-term issue.

“I still feel good about all those type of things,” Stefanski reiterated on Monday. “He’s working really hard, doing everything that he’s being asked to do medically so that we can get him back out there and he’ll be out there as soon as he’s ready — and functionally ready.”

Prior to the injury, Watson put up one of his best games as a member of the Browns, passing for 289 yards and a pair of touchdowns in a 27-3 rout of the Tennessee Titans.

Dorian-Thompson Robinson, PJ Walker Other Options for Browns

If Watson is unable to go, the Browns would likely turn to Dorian Thompson-Robinson. The rookie had a tough go in his first start against the Ravens, tossing a trio of interceptions and looking out of rhythm for most of the afternoon. With Watson out, Thompson-Robinson has continued to get more reps with the starters.

“Again, the guys did a nice job with practice today, but we’re not going towards Sunday just yet,” Stefanski said. “But DTR, like we talked about, young player getting better.”

Another option for the Browns is veteran PJ Walker, who was signed to the practice squad at the start of the season. Walker has some starting experience under his belt but is still adjusting to the Browns’ system and personnel.

“He’s a veteran,” Stefanski said. “He’s been in multiple systems, so he’s caught up. Obviously it’s not the same as when you’re here all spring and all summer. But he’s a vet, so he’s doing a nice job.”

The San Francisco 49ers are coming off a dominant victory against the Dallas Cowboys, crushing their NFC rival 42-10 to move to 5-0.

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