Cameron out, others uncertain against Bengals
CLEVELAND (AP) — Browns quarterback Brian Hoyer could be without three prime targets in Cincinnati on Thursday night.
The team said Wednesday that Pro Bowl tight end Jordan Cameron has been ruled out of the matchup with the first-place Bengals because of a concussion.
Also, wide receiver Andrew Hawkins is listed as questionable — a 50-50 chance of playing — and wide receiver Taylor Gabriel is probable — 25 percent chance — for the nationally televised game.
Cameron sustained his third concussion in three seasons on Oct. 26 against Oakland. He sat out Sunday’s win over Tampa Bay and will miss another game as the Browns (5-3) face the AFC North-leading Bengals (5-2-1). Cameron, who missed a game earlier this season with a shoulder injury, has just 13 receptions this season after making 80 catches in 2013.
Cameron is in the final year of his contract.
Hawkins, who leads the Browns with 39 receptions for 504 yards, got hurt on a low hit by the Buccaneers. The quick turnaround between games could make it tough for Hawkins to be on the field to face his former team. Hawkins played three seasons for the Bengals before they decided not to match an offer sheet made by the Browns to the restricted free agent in March.
Browns coach Mike Pettine said Hawkins will likely be a game-time decision.
"I know it’s real important to him," Pettine said. "I’ve been led to believe that it will be a game-time decision. If we leave it up to him, he’ll go, just knowing the type of player that he is."
A tryout player in Cleveland’s rookie minicamp, Gabriel has been a pleasant surprise for the Browns, who needed someone to step up during Pro Bowl wide receiver Josh Gordon’s suspension. The 5-foot-7, 167-pound Gabriel has delivered with 21 catches for 404 yards. He caught the go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter to help beat the Buccaneers.
"It feels good to be in this locker room," Gabriel said after Sunday’s win. "I’m enjoying every minute of it. I’m a rookie and I’m enjoying the ride."
Also, the Browns reported that defensive ends Phil Taylor (knee) and Billy Winn (toe) are also questionable. Taylor just returned to practice this week after having surgery. His return could help a rushing defense that has struggled all season.
Winn returned after missing three games with a quad injury last week and blocked a field goal in the first quarter.