The Browns traded running back Jerome Harrison to the Philadelphia Eagles in exchange for running back Mike Bell, the Eagles announced Wednesday.
The Browns confirmed the trade, which is contingent upon both players passing physicals. A Browns spokesman said Bell will arrive in Berea on Thursday and will take his physical then. Harrison practiced Wednesday before the trade was announced.
Harrison was the Browns' starting running heading into this season before Peyton Hillis took over the job. Harrison has carried the ball 31 times for 91 yards (2.9 average) this season. Bell has ran 16 times for 28 yards (1.75 average).
Originally signed by the Denver Broncos as an undrafted free agent out of the University of Arizona, Bell has compiled 364 carries for 1,404 yards and 14 touchdowns, plus 27 catches for 196 yards in 42 career regular-season games.
The 6-foot, 225-pound Bell spent two seasons with the Broncos before spending the past two with the New Orleans Saints. He had 172 carries for 654 yards (3.8 average) and five touchdowns last season as a member of the Super Bowl champion Saints. The Eagles signed Bell, who dealt with calf and hamstring injuries during training camp, as a restricted free agent this past offseason.
Harrison, 5-foot-9, 205 pounds, ran for a whopping 561 yards and five touchdowns in the final three games of the 2009 season. Still, the Browns clearly didn't buy into Harrison, who has been dealing with a thigh injury in recent weeks, as a long-term answer at running back. They traded up to draft Montario Hardesty in the second round (59th overall) of this year's draft, and they traded quarterback Brady Quinn and draft picks to the Broncos in exchange for Hillis.
The Browns selected Harrison in the fifth round of the 2006 draft out of Washington State University. He played in 51 games for the Browns, compiling 1,401 rushing yards and six touchdowns on 302 carries (4.6 average). He also racked up 61 catches for 444 yards and three touchdowns. In his most recent game, and likely his last, as a member of the Browns, he rushed six times for 6 yards this past Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons.
The Browns and Eagles are not shy about making deals with one another. Browns General Manager Tom Heckert, who held the same position with the Eagles, orchestrated a deal this past offseason for linebacker Chris Gocong and cornerback Sheldon Brown. In return, the Browns sent linebacker Alex Hall and two draft picks (fourth- and fifth-round selections) to the Eagles.