In the upcoming Week 8 showdown against the Seattle Seahawks, the Cleveland Browns will be without the services of Deshaun Watson.
The Browns officially declared Watson’s unavailability due to a strained right rotator cuff, as revealed by Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski during his announcement on Wednesday, October 25.
Stefanski stated, “Deshaun will be focusing on his rehabilitation. Given the injury he sustained during the game, which affected his throwing due to residual swelling, I believe it’s best for him to rest this week and prioritize his recovery. As I’ve mentioned previously, I will always make decisions that, in my judgment, are in the best interest of our football team and Deshaun. I believe this is the right decision for this week.”
In Watson’s absence, the Browns will once again turn to PJ Walker, who has completed 50 percent of his passes for the Browns this season, accumulating 370 passing yards and three interceptions.
Stefanski did not appear interested in exploring the idea of acquiring a veteran quarterback through a trade or signing to fill in for Watson as he recuperates, despite the looming trade deadline on October 31. He expressed his comfort with the current quarterback options available.
Watson’s absence in the upcoming game will mark his third missed match of the season due to this injury. While he started last week’s game against the Indianapolis Colts, he was removed in the first quarter following a heavy hit. Watson underwent a concussion evaluation, which he cleared, but Stefanski indicated that he made the decision to keep Watson out of the game out of concern that further damage could occur to his shoulder.
Stefanski commented after the game, saying, “It’s my responsibility to make difficult choices. I simply felt it was essential to safeguard him and avoid exposing him to further hits. He was subjected to a severe hit, and even though he passed the concussion protocol, I wanted to protect him.”
In the game against the Colts, Watson had a challenging performance, completing just one pass out of five attempts for five yards, resulting in an interception and a QB rating of 0.0.
To address the situation, the Browns added PJ Walker to the active roster, ending his tenure on the practice squad. The Browns had elevated Walker from the practice squad on three occasions, which is the maximum limit for a player on the practice squad.
Additionally, the Browns signed running backs Nate McCrary and Jordan Wilkins to the practice squad. The starting running back, Jerome Ford, is expected to miss time due to an ankle injury, and Kareem Hunt is also dealing with a thigh issue, which led to his absence from Wednesday’s practice.”