Browns release LB D'Qwell Jackson

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 26, 2014 at 3:52 pm •  Published: February 26, 2014
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CLEVELAND (AP) — For eight seasons, D'Qwell Jackson did everything for the Browns.

He overcame serious injuries to play at a high level. He led the team tackles. He became a locker room leader, showing the way for younger players. And, he did it all without complaint despite almost constant losing and change in Cleveland.

Jackson's run ended Wednesday.

The Browns released the veteran linebacker, cutting ties with one of their most popular players due a $4.1 million roster bonus next month.

The 31-year-old Jackson, who made 96 starts in eight seasons with the Browns, is now a free agent and can sign with any team. Jackson's agents and Cleveland's revamped front office tried to restructure his contract, but couldn't come to terms and decided to part ways.

"We had positive discussion with D'Qwell and his agent over the last several days, and we came to the mutual agreement to go in different directions," said Browns general manager Ray Farmer, who was promoted into that role last month and had to make a tough decision on Jackson. "D'Qwell is the epitome of class, leadership and professionalism. Every day of his NFL career, D'Qwell has been a solid representative of the Browns and the city of Cleveland, both between the lines on Sundays and off the field in our area community.

"We wish him nothing but the best in his future endeavors."

Jackson overcame two serious chest injuries earlier in his career. He missed most of two seasons, but recovered and was a mainstay on Cleveland's defense despite playing under four head coaches and four defensive coordinators.

He signed a five-year, $42.5 million contract extension last year through 2016. The deal, which included $19 million in guarantees and bonuses, would have paid Jackson $3.93 million this season. He was set to make $7.73 million and $7 million the next two seasons.

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