Getting blown out by the Baltimore Ravens is one thing, but you can stomach a single loss when you didn't even have your starting quarterback on the field. The Browns' real concern from Week 4 was the health of a couple of their key players in the trenches.
Fans got some relief on Monday, as Kevin Stefanski updated us on Myles Garrett and Ethan Pocic's injury statuses at the open of the Browns' bye week.
Browns News: Myles Garrett and Ethan Pocic Injury Updates
Stefanski declared both Garrett and Pocic as "day-to-day," with the most encouraging update on Garrett.
Stefanski's claim the team feels good about Garrett is a great sign he's at no risk of missing further time, and it sounds like he may even have been able to suit up this week if the Browns did have a game. I'm not expecting Garrett to miss any contests, and that's crucial when you consider how key he and the defense are to any success this team hopes to have.
The update on Pocic is a lot less optimistic. "Day-to-day" is good, but "could play in two weeks" doesn't inspire a ton of confidence. It sounds like there's a definitely chance, then, that Pocic could be on the shelf. And if he does play, it remains to be seen how close to 100% he'll be playing at.
Nick Harris wasn't awful when he filled in for Pocic on Sunday, looking particularly good in pass protection, but his run blocking was suspect and there were some clear chemistry issues. Continuity is super important for an offensive line, and the center is often especially key to that, as he's the one making pre-snap adjustments up front.
The Browns have a lot of work to do over the next two weeks, especially because we'll come out of the bye with a nightmare matchup against the San Francisco 49ers, but getting healthy is priority number one right now.
Climbing to the top of the AFC North standings is a tall task at the best of times, but it's going to become a lot harder if either Garrett or Pocic miss any time.
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