The Browns could be facing a crisis at defensive end.
Top backup Takk McKinley will need surgery after his Achilles tendon ruptured Monday night during the 16-14 loss to the Raiders. He was placed on injured reserve Tuesday.
Starter Jadeveon Clowney was placed on the COVID-19 list Sunday and experienced symptoms. He would have to be asymptomatic and test negative in order to be cleared in time to play Saturday against MVP quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the Packers in Green Bay.
And perhaps most concerning is All-Pro Myles Garrett injured a groin muscle Monday.
He fought through it to finish the game and said it would take someone to “kill me” or “break my leg” to keep him from playing the rest of the season, but Stefanski said Tuesday the team was still awaiting results of an MRI.
“I just don’t know at this point, still have more information coming,” Stefanski said when asked if Garrett might miss time.
Garrett has a franchise-record 15 sacks and is a candidate for NFL Defensive Player of the Year. He was voted a Pro Bowl starter for the second straight year.
“It was tough,” Garrett said of the injury after the game. “It hurt, but everybody’s hurting. I don’t want to say I’m special.”
Garrett leaped high in an unsuccessful attempt to block Daniel Carlson’s winning 48-yard field goal as time expired.
“He plays very, very, very hard,’ Stefanski said. “He leaves it all out there.”
McKinley was carted off the field in the third quarter, ending his season.
He signed a one-year, $4.25 million deal with the Browns in March as a free agent. In 11 games he had 2.5 sacks, eight quarterback hits, 18 tackles, three tackles for loss and a forced fumble.
“Losing Takk is very unfortunate,” Stefanski said. “He’s been giving us some really good reps and production.”
Raiders coach Rich Bisaccia wished McKinley well after the game. He spent time with the Raiders last season.
“He is a great player, really well-respected in the league and certainly well-respected by us in our locker room,” Bisaccia said.
The Browns are tied for fifth in the NFL with 37 sacks but could be without their top three pass rushers vs. Rodgers.
“There’s some uncertainty with Jadeveon, with Myles,” Stefanski said. “We’ll see how that goes throughout the week. We obviously are always looking to apply pressure to the quarterback, and those guys have done a nice job.
“We’ll see who’s available to us and come up with a plan based on people that are available.”
Ifeadi Ogenigbo, Porter Gustin and Joe Jackson are options behind the top three. Gustin was signed to the active roster from the practice squad Tuesday.