The early 2000s were really hard on the Browns, as they were still trying to find their identity after coming back into the NFL as an expansion team in 1999. They also made a plethora of bad signings in that time frame, which attributed to their lack of success. However, there was one player they landed in 2002 that became a fixture in their starting rotation — and that player was actually signed away from a Super Bowl winning franchise.
Ryan Tucker was selected in the fourth round of the 1997 NFL Draft by the then-St. Louis Rams out of TCU. He then spent the next five seasons with the Rams and developed into a starter at right tackle for them in 2000.
He held that role the following year as part of the “Greatest Show on Turf.” After playing in Super Bowl XXXVI and winning a ring with the explosive offense, Tucker headed to Cleveland as a free agent and immediately became the Browns’ starting right tackle.
He missed two games in his first season with the team, but in 2003, he was the only offensive player to be on the field for every single snap. Unfortunately, injuries and a couple of suspensions for testing positive for banned substances marred some of his time with the team. Tucker played just seven games in 2004 and nine in 2006 due to injuries and missed four games in 2007 due to suspension.
Tucker moved to right guard following his reinstatement, but that ended up being the last time he would play significant snaps for Cleveland.