E.J. Gaines is the latest name on the Cleveland Browns even growing list of injuries. The defensive back is now in concussion protocol and is likely out for Sunday’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
— Scott Petrak ct (@ScottPetrak) October 18, 2018
Head coach Hue Jackson and the staff is trying to figure out when Gaines sustained a concussion. Did it happen in practice on Wednesday?
“No, Gaines did not hurt himself at practice,” Jackson said. “Gaines came in and had symptoms. It has nothing to do with practice. Practice was yesterday. This happened today. I just think it was something that had been lingering. Maybe he did not say much. When they put them into the protocol once they check them, that is what it is. That is how it is.”
CB E.J. Gaines placed in concussion protocol, could miss Buccaneers game
— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) October 18, 2018
It’s a head scratcher, no pun intended, as to how Gaines suffered the concussion. He came to the team’s practice facility Thursday morning with concussion symptoms.
“Yeah, did not take a hit or anything like that,” Jackson said. “Just kind of strange, but that is how that stuff works. So we will have to work through it.”
So is there any chance Gaines can be cleared of concussion protocol before Sunday’s game with the Buccaneers?
“He is in the concussion protocol,” Jackson said. “Once they put him in, nothing that we can do about it.”
The news is a punch in the gut for the Browns secondary. Tampa Bay has a very talented group of wide receivers and tight ends. Cleveland needs as many healthy defensive backs as possible to go up against Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson.
“Absolutely, it is tough,” Jackson said. “Next man up. Here we go. They all are making plays. They have all scored touchdowns. Then you throw the tight ends in there, too. They have some weapons. Guys that can score the ball. It is a big challenge for us. Have to go play well.”
Gaines is now the second defensive back to miss time. He replaced Terrance Mitchell due to a forearm injury.
“I think that he did some good things,” Jackson said. “After the Raiders game and Mitch went down, I think that he accepted the challenge. I think that he was doing some good things for us. So it is a tough blow. Nothing that you can do about it. When they have these concussion symptoms, you have to make sure that you take care of them.”
So what changes will take place for the secondary on Sunday? Who starts for Gaines and what is the trickle down effect for the defensive backs?