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Browns OL Donald Stephenson suspended two games

Donald Stephenson's short time in Cleveland has been rocky.

The NFL suspended the veteran offensive tackle for the first two games of the regular season for violating the league's Policy and Program for Substances of Abuse.

Stephenson is eligible to return Sept. 17. He can participate in all offseason practices and preseason games.

Stephenson signed a one-year, $2.5 million contract in Cleveland in March, including $1 million guaranteed. The offensive lineman stayed away from the Browns all offseason, including mandatory minicamp this week, which comes with a maximum fine of $84,435. No reason for the absence was given by coach Hue Jackson.

The 29-year-old spent the past two seasons in Denver after four in Kansas City. Stephenson struggled mightily in two years with the Broncos. After starting 12 games in 2016, the turnstile blocker was replaced to open last season before making four subpar starts down the stretch.

Cleveland expected Stephenson to compete for the swing tackle gig on an offensive line seeking to replace longtime stalwart, Joe Thomas. If he makes the final roster, Stephenson will have to wait until Week 3 at the earliest to fill that role.

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