Star Browns rookie has broken fibula

CLEVELAND -- Kellen Winslow Jr. will miss at least two
months with a broken right leg, and the Cleveland Browns might keep the rookie tight end out for the rest of the season.

Winslow broke his fibula -- a bone in his lower leg -- trying to
recover an onside kick late in Sunday's 19-12 loss at Dallas.

The first-round draft pick will have surgery Tuesday and might
need screws and plates inserted in the leg, Browns trainer Mike
Colello said Monday.

The team expects Winslow to make a full recovery in eight to 10
weeks, but coach Butch Davis said the team has considered placing
him on injured reserve.

Another injured tight end, Steve Heiden, is expected to return
to practice this week.

In addition, the Browns are bracing for possibly bad news on
defensive end Courtney Brown, who suffered a mid-foot sprain -- the
latest injury for the former No. 1 overall draft pick.

Colello, who joined Davis at his weekly news conference because
of the "unusual circumstances" after Sunday's loss, said the
team was awaiting word on Brown from a foot and ankle specialist.

The former Penn State star has had a promising NFL career
spoiled by injuries. Brown missed the ends of the past two seasons
with injuries and sat out 11 games in 2001 after hurting his right
knee and left ankle.

The Browns had four other starters hurt Sunday.

Defensive tackle Gerard Warren re-aggravated a chest injury and
will miss two to four weeks; cornerback Daylon McCutcheon broke the
middle finger on his left hand and might need surgery; offensive
tackle Ryan Tucker strained his right quadriceps and will be out
two to four weeks; and left guard Paul Zukauskas reinjured a knee
ligament that kept him out of last season's finale.

Winslow was hurt while diving to recover an onside kick in the
final seconds. As Winslow went after the ball, his legs got caught
up in a pile with teammates Barry Gardner and Eric Westmoreland.

Davis defended himself against criticism that Winslow shouldn't
have been on the field during such a risky play.

"That would be tantamount to quitting," he said. "You're
putting the best people you have out there."

After a long training camp holdout and often contentious
negotiations with the Browns, Winslow signed a six-year contract
that could be worth $40 million.

Early reviews were overwhelmingly positive for the 6-foot-4,
250-pounder, who was expected to be a major contributor to the
Browns' offense and special teams this season.

The No. 6 overall pick, Winslow had four catches for 39 yards in
the season-opening win over Baltimore. And although he had just one
reception for 11 yards against Dallas, Winslow was open several
times but quarterback Jeff Garcia either didn't see him or
overthrew the former University of Miami star.

With both Winslow and Heiden hurt, Davis said the Browns have
considered re-signing Chad Mustard, who played in 10 games last
season and was in camp with Cleveland this summer but was released before Week 1.

Mustard, who had four catches for 29 yards in 2003, was in the Browns' locker room Monday.