Kevin Stefanski is one among 5 members of the Browns‘ group who has examined optimistic for COVID-19, the group introduced on Tuesday. Stefanski, two different coaches, left guard Joel Bitonio and receiver KhaDarel Hodge additionally examined optimistic, by way of NFL Community’s Tom Pelissero.
The Browns’ facility has been closed to conduct contract tracing. Particular groups coordinator Mike Priefer will function the Browns’ appearing head coach. Offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt will name performs in Stefanski’s absence, in response to NFL Community’s Ian Rapoport.
Regardless of the brand new optimistic instances, the Steelers-Browns playoff sport continues to be scheduled to kick off Sunday evening at 8:15 p.m. ET, in response to Pelissero.
Stefanski, with a optimistic end result, can’t return for at the very least 10 days, per CBS NFL Insider Jason La Canfora. This could rule him out for Sunday’s playoff sport in opposition to the Steelers, who will possible be with out beginning cornerback Joe Haden and tight finish Eric Ebron, who’re at the moment on Pittsburgh’s COVID-19 record.
The Browns have been besieged by the virus in current weeks. The group needed to shut down its facility twice final week after a number of members of the group examined optimistic. Previous to their Week 16 loss to the Jets, Cleveland positioned Hodge and fellow receivers Jarvis Landry, Rashard Higgins, Donovan Peoples-Jones and linebackers B.J. Goodson and Jacob Phillips on the reserve/COVID-19 record.
After falling to the Jets, the Browns managed to eek previous the Steelers in Week 17 regardless of cornerbacks Kevin Johnson and Denzel Ward, linebackers B.J. Goodson and Malcolm Smith, security Andrew Sendejo, and tight finish Harrison Bryant on the COVID-19 record.
The Browns are hoping to have Ward — whose optimistic take a look at is outdoors the obligatory 10-day window to return — for Sunday’s sport. After a sluggish begin, Steelers backup quarterback Mason Rudolph had success throwing in opposition to the Browns’ depleted secondary. After Pittsburgh fell behind 24-9, Rudolph threw landing passes to Chase Claypool and JuJu Smith-Schuster whereas getting the Steelers to inside two factors of tying the sport. Rudolph completed with 315 yards and two landing passes. The Steelers may have Ben Roethlisberger again beneath heart for Sunday evening’s sport.
The Browns, who went 11-5 throughout Stefanski’s first yr in Cleveland, are within the playoffs for the primary time since 2002. The final time the made the playoffs, Cleveland constructed a 24-7 lead earlier than falling to Tommy Maddox and the Steelers, 36-33. The Browns’ final playoff win was again in 1994, when Invoice Belichick’s group defeated Invoice Parcells’ Patriots within the wild card spherical.
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