Sep 10, 2023; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Anthony Richardson (5) hands the ball off to running back Deon Jackson (35)  in the first quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Browns sign RB Deon Jackson to roster

The Cleveland Browns signed running back Deon Jackson to the active roster from the practice squad on Saturday.

Jackson is expected to provide depth in the backfield behind Jerome Ford and Kareem Hunt for the Browns (3-2) in Sunday’s game against the Indianapolis Colts (3-3). Jackson began the season with the Colts before spending the past four weeks on the practice squad.

Also on Saturday, the Browns elevated quarterback P.J. Walker and linebacker Charlie Thomas III to the active roster from the practice squad. Walker would be in line to start Sunday’s game should Deshaun Watson be unable to play due to a shoulder injury.

Watson, who is listed as questionable to face the Colts, was wearing a harness on his shoulder and a compression sleeve on his right arm Friday. He has not played since bruising the rotator cuff in his right (throwing) shoulder in Week 3.

Walker, 28, completed 18 of 34 passes for 192 yards with two interceptions in Cleveland’s 19-17 upset victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday.

Jackson, 24, rushed for just 14 yards on 13 carries and gained only 14 yards on five receptions during Indianapolis’ season-opening 31-21 loss to Jacksonville on Sept. 10.

He rushed for 281 yards and two touchdowns and caught 35 passes for 223 yards and one score in 27 games (three starts) over the last three seasons with the Colts. He was undrafted out of Duke in 2021.

Thomas, 23, is a rookie out of Georgia Tech. He has spent the entire season on the Browns’ practice squad.

–Field Level Media

Aug 12, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA;  Chicago Bears quarterback P.J. Walker (15) passes against the Tennessee Titans in the first half at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Browns elevate QB P.J. Walker to start vs. 49ers

The Cleveland Browns elevated quarterback P.J. Walker and wide receiver Jaelon Darden to the active roster from the practice squad on Saturday.

The procedural move allows Walker to be under center on Sunday when the Browns (2-2) host the San Francisco 49ers (5-0). Rookie Dorian Thompson-Robinson struggled in place of injured starter Deshaun Watson on Oct. 1, completing just 19 of 36 passes for 121 yards with three interceptions in a 28-3 setback to the Baltimore Ravens.

Watson, 28, reportedly is dealing with a contusion to his rotator cuff in his right shoulder after being sacked 12 times in three games this season. He didn’t practice Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and reportedly could miss more than a month.

Walker will face off against 49ers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks, who was the Panthers’ defensive coordinator and then interim coach during Walker’s three seasons at Carolina. Walker was benched after Wilks briefly gave him a chance to start in 2022.

Walker, 28, joined the Browns’ practice squad on Aug. 30.

He played 15 games, including seven starts, for the Panthers from 2020-22. He completed 131 of 228 pass attempts (57.5 percent) for 1,461 yards, five touchdowns, 11 interceptions and a 63.9 passer rating.

Darden, 24, has eight catches for 69 yards in 23 career games with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2021-22) and Browns.

–Field Level Media