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Weeden, Richardson miss practice

Posted Dec 26, 2012

Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden and running back Trent Richardson missed Wednesday’s practice, but have not been ruled out for Sunday’s game at Pittsburgh.

Cleveland Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden and running back Trent Richardson missed Wednesday’s practice as a result of injuries sustained in last Sunday’s loss to the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.

Weeden is working his way back from an injured right shoulder, while Richardson is fighting through an ankle injury.

“Their injuries will not require surgery; they’ll be healthy soon,” Browns coach Pat Shurmur said. “They won’t practice today, but I will not rule them out for this weekend. We’ll see as the week goes on.

“The injuries were not as severe as you might have thought, but they’re still injured.”

After Weeden was injured in Sunday’s game, third-year veteran Colt McCoy entered the lineup and completed nine of 17 attempts for 79 yards with a six-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Greg Little with 7:56 left in the fourth quarter.

McCoy, who threw his first passes of the regular season last Sunday, was sacked four times and suffered an injured right shoulder against the Broncos.

“Colt McCoy will also not practice today,” Shurmur said. “He’s got a sore shoulder from the game. Thad Lewis will take the first-team reps and Josh Johnson, who’s our new quarterback, will run the scout team.

Sheldon Brown is coming back from the concussion, so only time will tell there.”

Prior to Wednesday’s practice, the Browns announced the signing of free-agent quarterback Josh Johnson. Johnson’s signing served as an “insurance policy” should either Weeden or McCoy not be able to play against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field Sunday.

Combined between 2011 and 2012, Weeden and McCoy have combined to start 28 out of a possible 31 games.

“We’ll see how they come back,” Shurmur said. “Each guy’s different, but absolutely (it is insurance). Whoever’s in there, I trust. I’ve had experience with Thad in the past and he hasn’t had a lot of opportunities in regular-season games to go in there and play. If he’s in there playing, we definitely trust that he’ll do a good job.

“If they’re healthy and they’re willing and able to go, then, of course, they’ll play. You’ve got to overlook the fact that it’s your last game and try to make your decisions on playing your next game. If they’re able to go, then, they will. If they can’t, I don’t have any problem at the end of the week ruling them out before Sunday.”

SIGNING JOSH JOHNSON

In his four years with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Johnson completed 96 of 177 attempts for 1,042 yards and five touchdowns against 10 interceptions. He played in 26 games, made five starts and was sacked16 times for 91 lost yards.

Shurmur said Johnson had experience with the West Coast offense based on his collegiate career at the University of San Diego.

“He’s crossed paths with a lot of our concepts, so we felt like he would be a good guy to bring in and see what he can do,” Shurmur said. “We’ve been working with him for a solid day now. From what I’ve seen, he’s got some familiarity with what we do, and if he had to go in, we’d have to pare it way down, which is the case when you bring in a guy with just a couple days’ preparation, but we’d be confident that he could go in there and execute.”

PRO BOWL TEAM

The NFL will announce the Pro Bowl teams on Wednesday evening with a selection show on NFL Network. The Browns had several players, including left tackle Joe Thomas, special teams standout Joshua Cribbs, kicker Phil Dawson and linebacker D’Qwell Jackson, finish in the top ten at their respective positions in the fan voting.

“There are some guys here that I think are worthy,” Shurmur said. “In some ways, I’ve got my fingers crossed for a couple of them. We’ll just see how it plays itself out.”