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Browns say “grave disappointment” in Crowell, but he’s making necessary steps

Pittsburgh Steelers v Cleveland Browns

CLEVELAND, OH - JANUARY 3: Isaiah Crowell #34 of the Cleveland Browns stiff arms Cameron Heyward #97 of the Pittsburgh Steelers during the third quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium on January 3, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

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The since-deleted Instagram post showing a police officer’s throat being slashed made by Browns running back Isaiah Crowell was the first topic of conversation at the team’s pre-camp press conference on Thursday.

The public message from Browns coach Hue Jackson and executive vice president of football operations Sashi Brown was that Crowell is taking necessary steps to make up for his mistake.

“It starts with grave disappointment in the action in the first place,” Brown said. “But to his credit, [after it happened] he called both Hue and I on his own to be accountable. Obviously, it was a huge mistake but he has taken steps at least at the outset that he should.”

Crowell quickly issued a formal apology, and the Browns released a statement that said “just an apology” would not be enough. Crowell later attended the funeral of one of the police officers killed in Dallas earlier this month and pledged his first game check to the Dallas fallen officers’ fund.

Jackson said he understands Crowell may deal with more backlash from fans as camp opens -- “rightfully so,” Jackson said -- but said Crowell will continue to work “at making it right” and showing remorse.

“I truly believe this is not who Isaiah Crowell is,” Jackson said.