The Browns signed Holly to a one-year contract on Thursday and will move the three-year veteran to the injured-reserve list. Holly suffered a severe left knee injury while defending a pass during an organized team activity on Tuesday.
As a restricted free agent with three-years of NFL experience, Holly was tendered a one-year contract offer earlier this spring. In a procedural move, Holly will be waived-injured by the Browns and once he clears waivers, will revert to the team's injured-reserved list.
Holly was injured when he jumped and landed awkwardly while covering wide receiver Braylon Edwards. He suffered cartilage and ligament damage in the knee, and general manager Phil Savage said the surgery will most likely be Friday. Holly was competing with Brandon McDonald for a starting spot.
Cleveland's top two corners remaining are Eric Wright and McDonald, both entering their second year in the NFL. Wright, a second-round draft pick, started 13 games as a rookie. McDonald, a fifth-rounder, got his first significant playing time at midseason while Wright was out with a knee injury.
"This was a position that if you look at our roster and our depth chart, it was kind of a soft spot," Savage said earlier this week. "You hate to have an injury of any kind, but this one is particularly hurtful because of the situation we're in already."
Even if McDonald solidifies himself as a starter, the Browns have serious depth concerns. They traded starter Leigh Bodden to Detroit in the offseason for defensive lineman Shaun Rogers and last week cut Kenny Wright, who was arrested on drug charges in the offseason. The addition of Cousin should help.
The Browns also waived linebacker Asa Matthews, a rookie free agent from Northern Colorado, on Thursday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report