Browns place Chris Owens on IR, sign Julian Posey to active roster
The 5-foot-9, 180-pound Owens suffered a knee injury late in the fourth quarter, while tackling running back Maurice Jones-Drew during the Jacksonville Jaguars’ game-winning touchdown drive this past Sunday.
While cornerbacks Joe Haden and Buster Skrine have been the definitive starters at the position this season, Owens still remained a key part of the Browns’ defense – serving as the team’s primary nickelback. In this role, Owens gained a significant amount of playing time and saw some action as a blitzing cornerback this season.
The five-year pro appeared in all 12 games (with three starts) this season, after signing a one-year contract with the Browns earlier this March. Owens previously spent the first-four years of his career in Atlanta.
Owens finished his 2013 season with totals of 54 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 3 passes defensed, 1 forced fumble and 1 fumble recovery. He also had seven special teams tackles.
His exit could open doors for rookie cornerback Lean McFadden, the Browns’ third-round pick out of San Diego, who has seen limited playing time this season. Although McFadden has seen some action in all 12 games this season and picked up increased reps over the past couple of weeks, he has still not recorded any defensive stats –though he does have three special teams tackles. But now he’ll get an opportunity for a bigger role as the likely replacement for Owens at nickel.
As for Posey, he is a first-year player who appeared in just one game for the Browns – the 13-31 loss to the Green Bay Packers last month. But Posey was waived and then placed on practice squad.
The 5-10, 190-pound Posey spent most of the regular season on the Browns’ practice squad after spending training camp with the Miami Dolphins.
Posey spent 2012 in Miami as well, where he remained on the practice squad for most of the season while being elevated to the Dolphins’ active roster for just two games.
Originally signed as an undrafted rookie out of the Ohio University, Posey also spent 15 weeks with the New York Jets as a member of their practice squad in 2011.