The winless Cleveland Browns haven't had much to smile about, but the return of their best defensive player is a start.
Cornerback Joe Haden rejoined his teammates and coaches Monday after serving a four-game suspension for violating the league's policy on banned substances.
Haden confirmed that he tested positive for Adderall and expressed remorse for letting down the team and its fans, acknowledging his "mistakes hurt a lot of people," per The Associated Press. Haden argued that his suspension was excessive.
The Browns were nipped 17-16 in the opener by the Philadelphia Eagles, the only game Haden has played in this season. He was sensational in defeat, largely shutting down receiver DeSean Jackson and furthering the argument that he's one of the game's top-five cover corners.
There's no clear No. 2 man in Cleveland's secondary, and it showed during Haden's absence as opponents torched the Browns for 285.3 yards through the air.
It might be too late for this team to recover from the disastrous start. The Browns are the league's final winless team and their 0-5 record is no mirage. This defense has been eaten alive and currently ranks 28th in the NFL.
Haden has his work cut out for him.
Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.