BEREA — Browns coach Rob Chudzinski released the team’s first official depth chart of the season on Sunday.
As usual, there were several surprises, along with many more unanswered questions.
Jason Pinkston, who missed the final 10 games in 2013 after being diagnosed with blood clots in his lungs, is listed as the co-starter at both guard spots.
John Greco (left guard) and Shawn Lauvao (right guard) are also listed with the first-team offense, but it is unlikely that either spot will be locked down until late August.
“They all have experience, so they understand what they need to do,” Chudzinski said of the aforementioned trio. “It is really close, a tight competition.”
At right cornerback, Buster Skrine and Chris Owens have been designated co-starters on defense. Top cornerback Joe Haden is on the opposite side of the first team.
Craig Robertson has officially moved into a starting spot at inside linebacker, alongside defensive captain D’Qwell Jackson. Tank Carder and James-Michael Johnson are both listed behind Robertson on the second team.
The first-team outside linebackers are free agent acquisition Paul Kruger and Jabaal Sheard, while the defensive line features nose tackle Phil Taylor, right end Desmond Bryant, and left end Ahtyba Rubin.
None of Cleveland’s draft choices are listed atop their respective positions, but No. 1 pick Barkevious Mingo (outside linebacker), Leon McFadden (left cornerback), and Jamoris Slaughter (free safety) have been designated as second-teamers.
The Browns’ special teams have been in flux since the first day of the offseason, which is clearly illustrated by the depth charts.
Kickers Shayne Graham and Brandon Bogotay, and punters T.J. Conley and Spencer Lanning are all listed as co-starters on the first team. The same is true for kickoff returners Johnson Bademosi and Dion Lewis, while Travis Benjamin and Buster Skrine are listed as the second-teamers running back kicks.
Benjamin does have the sole first-team spot at punt returner, ahead of fellow backup wide receivers Davone Bess and Jordan Norwood, and Josh Cooper.
Cleveland opens its preseason Thursday at home against the St. Louis Rams. It hosts the Miami Dolphins to begin the regular season on Sept. 8.
Contact Brian Dulik at email@example.com.
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