Injuries mount for Browns
BEREA — The Cleveland Browns could be without six defensive starters, including their entire secondary, when they host the defending NFC champion Los Angeles Rams.
Safety Damarious Randall (concussion) and linebacker Christian Kirksey (chest) were formally declared out by coach Freddie Kitchens following practice Friday at the Browns’ suburban training facility. Safety Morgan Burnett (quadriceps), linebacker Adarius Taylor (ankle) and cornerbacks Denzel Ward (hamstring) and Greedy Williams (hamstring) are listed as questionable for the first nationally televised Sunday night game in Cleveland since 2008.
Randall, Burnett and Taylor sat out all three practices this week, while defensive captain Kirksey is out indefinitely and may require surgery for his unspecified injury that occurred Monday during the Browns’ 23-3 win at the New York Jets.
Ward and Williams did not participate in team drills Thursday and Friday. There is a strong possibility the Rams’ explosive offense — led by quarterback Jared Goff, running back Todd Gurley and wide receiver Robert Woods — could face four fill-in defensive backs. Cornerbacks T.J. Carrie and Terrance Mitchell and safeties Eric Murray and Jermaine Whitehead are set to move into the starting lineup, along with rookie linebacker Mack Wilson. Cleveland has a 1-1 record and its defense is ranked seventh in the NFL.