Former Vikings Safety Will See More Playing Time with CLE
It seems that a former Vikings safety has found himself a nice role elsewhere in the NFL this season. For the third time in four weeks, the Cleveland Browns have elevated safety Mike Brown from their practice squad.
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Brown, a rookie in 2022, played his college ball at Miami (OH) before going undrafted in the 2022 NFL Draft. He spent five seasons with the RedHawks, recording a grand total of 195 tackles, 18.5 TFLs, 3.0 sacks, 6 pass defenses, and four interceptions. He actually took two of those interceptions all the way for touchdowns, both coming during the 2019 season.
After going undrafted, he signed with the Vikings as part of the training camp roster. He played all three preseason games for Minnesota, recording 15 tackles and a pass defense against the Denver Broncos in the third and final game.
Unfortunately, Brown’s production wasn’t rewarded with a roster spot given the depth Minnesota had at safety, including first-round pick Lewis Cine. The Vikings waived Brown on August 30th, and two weeks later, he was signed by the Green Bay Packers to their practice squad.
He remained in Green Bay for 8 days, but the Packers then released him prior to their Week 3 game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Days later, Brown landed back in Minnesota on the Vikings practice squad, but once again, he could not break into the lineup despite Cine going down with a season-ending leg injury. Then, on October 25th, the Browns came swooping in and signed him.
They stashed Brown on their own practice squad, and while it took some time for the rookie safety to get on the field, Cleveland elevated the 23-year-old to their active roster on November 19th.
Brown appeared in 16 snaps for Cleveland, all coming on special teams. He did not record any stats in his NFL debut, but 11 weeks into the NFL season, and on his third team, the safety had finally gotten into an NFL regular season game.
The safety didn’t get to follow up his showing in Week 12 against the Buccaneers, but Cleveland once again elevated him in Week 13. In that game, Brown recorded his first career tackle against the Houston Texans, and he played 21 snaps on special teams.
Now in Week 14, Brown appears set to get even more playing time for Cleveland as they elevate him from the practice squad again. This time, he will get his action against Cleveland’s AFC North and in-state rivals, the Cincinnati Bengals.
At 5-7, the Browns need a victory on the road to remain in the AFC playoff hunt, and a victory puts pressure on the 8-4 Bengals for the AFC North division. Kickoff between the two AFC rivals is set for 12 PM CST in Cincinnati. Vikings fans likely won’t see much of it as the Minnesota Vikings have their own rivalry game to worry about, but a former Viking seems to be establishing a home in the NFL.
Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho with a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing. He also earned minors in History, Human Biology, and Journalism. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys marathon training, playing video games, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. For more of his opinions, check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.