Cleveland Browns: Desmond Bryant may miss 2016 season with injury


Cleveland Browns defensive end Desmond Bryant will reportedly miss the 2016 season after undergoing surgery for a torn pectoral muscle.

The Cleveland Browns quiet off-season took another hit on Tuesday with the news that veteran defensive end Desmond Bryant may miss the 2016 season after suffering a torn pectoral muscle.

The news was first reported by Anthony Lima from 92.3 The Fan, but has yet to be confirmed by the team.

Bryant reportedly sustained the injury during a weight lifting session on Tuesday. With the recovery period expected to be up to six months, that very well could mean that Bryant will be out for the entire season.

According to Dr. Bradford Parsons, chief of shoulder surgery at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan, there is not much that Bryant or the Browns training staff can do to shorten the recovery period.

Parsons spoke to last fall about the recover timeline:

"When people tear [the pec], obviously a professional athlete they want to get them back as fast as possible and he has the advantage of having trainers and dedicated therapists and top-notch surgeons who are going to get him back as fast as possible. But the process of healing takes a little time, you have to let the tendon that’s repaired knit and physically heal to the bone before you can stretch it too much. Then during that process of healing you might need to do a little bit of rehab to get the flexibility and strength back in the arm. That’s why it’s a 5-to-6 month recovery, not just a few months."

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Former Browns defensive tackle Phil Taylor suffered the same injury during a weight lifting session in May of 2012 and was able to return in November for the season’s final eight games. But former Browns linebacker D’Qwell Jackson missed 10 games in 2009 and all of the 2010 season after tearing his pectoral muscle on both sides. Jackson had two surgeries but bounced back and led Cleveland in tackles last season.

So the good news is that this is not a career-ending type of injury for Bryant. The bad news is that even if he can recover in five months, that puts him in mid-December when the Browns will have only three games remaining on the schedule.

It also means that Bryant, who will turn 31 by the end of the 2016 season, may have played his last game for the Browns.

Cleveland signed Bryant as a free agent in 2013 and he has made 41 starts in his three seasons with the Browns. He was the co-leader in sacks last year with six, giving him 14.5 total sacks during his time with the Browns.

The loss of Bryant leaves John Hughes, who is entering his fifth season with the Browns, as the only current member of the defensive line with more than one year of experience at the NFL level.

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Bryant’s injury could force the Browns to sign another veteran on a short-term contract to fill the void, or the may decide to roll with the youngsters and see what happens. The fact that the injury occurred prior to the start of training camp gives the coaching staff time to work with Xavier Cooper and Carl Nassib to see if they are up to the challenge before the team makes a roster decision.