If you were crossing your fingers in hopes that Browns defensive tackle Phil Taylor’s injury wasn’t a torn pectoral muscle, you can go ahead and stop now.
Browns coach Pat Shurmur confirmed the worst on Friday when he said that Taylor did tear his left pectoral muscle while working out on Thursday. Shurmur said that Taylor would have surgery next week and resisted putting a firm timeline on his expected recovery.
“He’s going to miss a significant amount of time … more months than weeks,” Shurmur said, via Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “It’s too early to speculate how long that will be. It’s just one of those things that happened.”
The Browns have some recent experience with these injuries. Linebacker D’Qwell Jackson missed all but six games of the 2009 and 2010 seasons because of two separate torn pectorals although Cleveland is surely hoping that the timing of Taylor’s injury means he’ll be able to contribute something to the team this year.
Until Taylor returns, the Browns will be scrambling to fill his spot. Third-round pick John Hughes will be in the mix as a potential replacement, but there’s no one with Taylor’s size and skill to help them do a better job of stopping the run than they did in 2011.