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Browns TE Gary Barnidge has sports hernia surgery

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Amid an offseason in which the Cleveland Browns have added five rookie wide receivers, one of their best pass-catching options will miss time because of sports hernia surgery.

Tight end Gary Barnidge will miss the rest of the team's offseason program but should return for the start of training camp, coach Hue Jackson told reporters Thursday.

The news of minor surgery should not scare anyone at this point in the offseason, but Barnidge's health will be worth keeping an eye on. If the Browns end up starting Cody Kessler or Robert Griffin III -- either way, it will be the equivalent of trotting out a rookie passer -- a capable mid-range receiving tight end will aid tremendously in their success.

Barnidge, who signed a four-year, $13.5 million extension this offseason, had a career-best 79 receptions for 1,043 yards and nine touchdowns last season.

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