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BROWNS SUSPEND KELLEN WINSLOW

The Cleveland Browns have announced that tight end Kellen Winslow has received a one-game suspension. On Sunday Winslow publicly criticized the team for its handling of his recent hospitalization, which he said was a result of a staph infection. General Manager Phil Savage and coach Romeo Crennel said the public criticism was inappropriate and that Winslow could be disciplined as a result. Today Savage released a statement detailing the reasons for the suspension. “The Cleveland Browns are committed to winning and taking care of our players,” Savage said in the statement. “We are also committed to protecting the privacy of our players, particularly with regard to medical issues. To that end, following discussions with Kellen Winslow and his representation, the Browns agreed to make every effort to maintain the confidentiality of his recent medical condition. ... “His comments and behavior on Sunday evening, however, were unwarranted, inappropriate, and unnecessarily disparaging to our organization. His statements brought unjustified negative attention to our organization, and violated the team-first concept of our football squad. Therefore, disciplinary action will be taken in the form of a one-game suspension without pay for conduct detrimental to the club.” Savage acknowledged in the statement that concerns about staph infections (which have hit several Browns players in recent years) are legitimate, but he insisted that the team is doing everything in its power to keep its players safe from staph infections. “As an organization, we have worked hard to ensure the safety and well-being of our players. Consistent with this effort, we have consulted the team’s medical experts to ensure that any instances of staph infections are evaluated and treated thoroughly and expeditiously, and in accordance with the recommended standard of care. Further, steps have been and continue to be taken on a daily, monthly, and yearly basis to protect our players and personnel at our training facility and stadium.” Winslow has not spoken publicly since the suspension was announced. He is expected to miss Sunday’s game against the Jaguars and return for the November 2 game against the Ravens.