The injuries continue to pile up for the Cleveland Browns, though some of their most recent ones provide a more serious threat to the success of the team’s 2011 season.
Left guard Eric Steinbach is still determining if he should get surgery to fix the disc problem in his back, which has kept him out since August 17. At this point, it’s up in the air if Steinbach will be able to play at all this season, which poses a big problem to the left side of the offensive line.
For the past four seasons, Steinbach has anchored that left side with left tackle Joe Thomas, helping the Browns develop one of the best up-and-coming offensive lines in the NFL. Rookie Jason Pinkston could take Steinbach’s place, but he’ll have big shoes to fill.
The news is only slightly better for running back Brandon Jackson, who has been out with a toe injury. Initially, it was expected that he would require surgery, but the update there is that Jackson likely won’t need it, and might only miss six weeks. One of the Browns’ strengths this season was supposed to be at running back, and that depth is taking a hit before the season even begins. It’s now more important than ever that Montario Hardesty and his surgically repaired knees stay healthy.
The depth of the Cleveland Browns was a major concern heading into training camp, and the team has been ravaged by injuries in the last two weeks. These are the kinds of things that can unravel a team’s season, and time will only tell if that happens to the Browns in 2011.