Browns backup left outside linebacker Quentin Groves is out for the season with an injured left ankle that will require surgery, coach Rob Chudzinski announced today during his news conference coming off the team’s bye.
Groves, the Browns’ special teams captain, will undergo surgery later this week or next week, Chudzinski said. The Browns placed Groves on injured reserve today and promoted undrafted rookie linebacker Brandon Magee from the practice squad to the active roster.
Undrafted rookie Eric Martin is next on the depth chart behind Groves. Rookie backup right outside linebacker Barkevious Mingo, the sixth overall pick in this year’s draft, could also receive a heavier workload as could undrafted rookie Paul Hazel, the third-string right outside linebacker. Left outside linebacker Paul Kruger and right outside linebacker Jabaal Sheard are the starters.
“Quentin’s a valuable part of our team and a valuable part of the leadership on our team, so obviously we’re disappointed,” Chudzinski said. “But it’s the best thing right now to get that fixed and corrected. We’ll have to have other guys step up whether it’s on special teams or whether it’s on defense in the outside ’backer rotation and some of the things that he’s doing from that standpoint.”
Groves joined the Browns in March by signing a two-year, $2.8 million contract. Groves, who played for Browns defensive coordinator Ray Horton last season as a member of the Arizona Cardinals, tallied four tackles, including two sacks, and a forced fumble this season.
Martin insisted he's prepared to rise to the occasion.
“I feel very ready,” Martin said. “It’s the reason why I’m playing this game -- to be ready for stuff like that. All it takes is a person to just come in and just step up.
“If one goes down, one has to come up. I’ll see just as much time as he did hopefully and hopefully I can produce just as much as he did.”
Groves suffered a high-ankle sprain Sept. 15 against the Baltimore Ravens. He missed the next three games and then played in two before aggravating the injury Oct. 20 against the Green Bay Packers. He missed the following game against the Kansas City Chiefs and then returned for the rematch against the Ravens on Nov. 3, when he aggravated it again. He played in five of the Browns’ nine games but will miss the remaining seven.
Other injury updates
Quarterback Jason Campbell looked good practice despite suffering bruised ribs Nov. 3 against the Ravens. “He’s doing fine,” Chudzinski said. “Good to go. He’s full speed in practice.” … Returner and wide receiver Travis Benjamin will have surgery on the torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee this week. Benjamin suffered the injury Oct. 27 against the Chiefs.