Long Wait for a Long Snapper?

We have our first somewhat mysterious injury of training camp, as Ryan Pontbriand misses camp again today. Meanwhile, the pads start popping, tempers get a little hotter, and the new offensive line is tested a bit more. Here's the first independent report from training camp anywhere on the web!

BEREA - Coach Romeo Crennel wouldn't confirm if long snapper Ryan Pontbriand might miss several weeks because of a reported bulging disc in his back.

Pontbriand has missed the first two days of training camp. Backup fullback Ben Miller has been working in Pontbriand's place.

"The trainer hasn't told me that he will be out because of any bulging disc," Crennel said. "Like I said Friday about those three (injured) guys, one had a back strain, one had an ankle sprain and one had a headache. Which one those are? I've forgot."

Cornerback Daylon McCutcheon and offensive lineman Craig Osika are the other two players that missed the first two days of practice.

Miller gained some experience long snapping at the Air Force Academy and in NFL Europe. He spent last season on injured-reserve with a right ankle injury.


THE PADS START POPPING: Fullback Terrelle Smith charged into free safety Brian Russell after catching a screen pass during the morning practice. Russell had a few words for Smith.

"It was just me being Terrelle," Smith said. "I practice and play hard. I'm not going to change for anybody. I play one way, one speed, one sound. That's how you have to be in this game."

Cornerback Michael Lehan took a hard hit from tight end Keith Willis on a pass by Charley Frye that was tipped. Lehan was leveled as he made an attempt for the interception.

Willis reached down to help Lehan up, but the cornerback bounced to his feet and hustled back to the huddle without assistance.


CAMP NOTES: The Browns ended the morning practice with a short-yardage drill. Defensive end Orpheus Roye stopped the first run at the 1-yard line. Reuben Droughns dove over left guard Joe Andruzzi and left tackle L.J. Shelton for the score on the second play.

None of the quarterbacks performed well in the morning practice. Frye overthrew a receiver on a short toss across the middle. On the play when Lehan was hit hard, Frye scrambled from trouble and threw the ball on the run. It was tipped by a defender before reaching Lehan.

Crennel said that it's possible Kenard Lang and Matt Stewart could be on the field at the same time. Both players are working at strongside linebacker. Stewart received most of the time with the first unit Saturday.

Lehan practiced with the first string at left cornerback in McCutcheon's absence.

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