Earlier this week the Cleveland Browns announced that they have signed former Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Brian Allen, 27, to a contract for 2021, having plucked him off Cincinnati’s practice squad at the end of last season.
Allen—6-foot-3 and 200 pounds—was a fifth-round pick of the Steelers in the 2017 Draft who played collegiately for the Utah Utes. He appeared in 16 games for the Steelers in 2017-18, playing exclusively on special teams. He later spent time with the Seattle Seahawks, Buffalo Bills & San Francisco 49ers, and started one game for the 49ers this past season.
Cincinnati added Allen to its practice squad in early November and he was on the Bengals’ Reserve/COVID-19 list between December 21 and January 1 before moving on to the Browns.
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Ryan Switzer’s Son Has Been Discharged From the Hospital
Another of the former Steelers on Cleveland’s roster is wide receiver Ryan Switzer, whose infant son was battling COVID-19 and a mysterious bleeding condition for most of the month of March.
His son’s bleeding condition proved difficult to diagnose, so much so that the family traveled from Cleveland to Boston, where surgeons were apparently able to determine a cause and operated on Christian on March 29.
Later that day Switzer tweeted a message indicating that surgery was successful and that Christian is expected to “make a full recovery.”
On Thursday, Switzer provided another update, indicting that Christian had been discharged from the hospital and that mom & dad took him to visit the nationally-recognized New England Aquarium.
Switzer was originally signed to Cleveland’s practice squad on October 1, 2020, this after he was released by the Steelers prior to the regular-season opener after it became clear that wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud was a more dynamic kick returner.
Switzer went on to sign a one-year Reserve/Future contract with the Browns in January, giving him another opportunity to resurrect his flagging career and become “the next [Julian] Edelman.”
Meanwhile, McCloud will be back with the Steelers for another season, having recently re-upped for another year. But in 2021 he will face competition from Mathew Sexton, a former Eastern Michigan wide receiver/kick return specialist with 4.3 speed.
Chris Hubbard Also Remains with the Browns
As for the third of three former Steelers on Cleveland’s roster, that would be offensive lineman Chris Hubbard, who came into the NFL when he was signed by the Steelers as an undrafted free agent out of Alabama-Birmingham in 2013.
Over the course of five seasons, Hubbard worked his way up from the practice squad to the starting right tackle job, which he held with the Steelers in 2017. After that season, he left in free agency, signing a five-year, $37.5 million contract with the Browns.
Hubbard started every game during his first season in Cleveland, but has since moved into a backup role. In fact, he took a pay cut last offseason that enabled him to continue his career with the Browns.
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