Browns defensive end Desmond Bryant’s season has ended because of an irregular heartbeat that will require surgery.
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Bryant, who signed a five-year, $34 million contract as a free agent with Cleveland in March, reported symptoms on Monday morning, a team spokesman said. Bryant played in Sunday’s game against Jacksonville and was credited with four pressures on Jaguars quarterback Chad Henne.
The Browns said Bryant will undergo ”a minor heart procedure” this week. He is expected to make a full recovery and resume his playing career.
Bryant was taken out of an Oct. 3 game against Buffalo in the third quarter complaining of shortness of breath. He was hospitalized overnight at The Cleveland Clinic with an irregular heartbeat. It was the second such episode for Bryant, who left a game last year with Oakland and was hospitalized for an irregular heartbeat. Both times Bryant returned to play in the next week’s game.
”It’s a pretty scary feeling,” Bryant said after returning to practice in October. ”Your heart won’t calm down. Fortunately, we’ve got a great staff on hand and they’ve got me doing the right things I need and I’m now back to normal.”
Bryant indicated he had made some changes to guard against a recurrence.
”We’re doing some things to prevent it from happening again,” he said. ”I need to try to cut out anything that may start this up, as well as taking some medication to help prevent it.”
The 27-year-old Bryant started all 12 games this season for the Browns and made 45 tackles with 3 1-2 sacks. He had a career-high 10 tackles and two sacks in the season opener, but his production has steadily dropped and he has not had a sack in nine games.
The Browns placed him on the reserve/non-football illness list. Bryant played the previous four seasons with the Raiders, who signed the 6-foot-6, 310-pounder as an undrafted free agent from Harvard in 2009.
Bryant was not on the practice field Wednesday and coach Rob Chudzinski did not disclose why he would not be participating before the workout.
To fill Bryant’s roster spot, the Browns promoted wide receiver Brian Tyms from the practice squad to the active roster.
Also, the Browns the released linebacker Justin Staples from the practice squad.