Cleveland Browns second-year wide receiver Antonio Callaway has been in the doghouse throughout training camp, and during the Browns' first preseason game on Thursday night, it was pretty obvious that he is behind Rashard Higgins in the race for the No. 3 receiver role.
Well, it seems like Higgins might win that job by default now, as Callaway won't even be available for the first quarter of the season.
According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, Callaway has been suspended for the first four games of the regular season for violating the league's performance-enhancing drugs policy, the latest blow to Callaway's suddenly shaky standing in Cleveland.
Callaway has been appealing the ruling, and as Rapoport points out, this may have been the reason why Callaway has been running with the reserves in training camp, as seems probable Freddie Kitchens and the rest of the Browns' coaching staff knew this ban was coming all along.
The 22-year-old, who played his collegiate football at the University of Florida, was originally selected by Cleveland in the fourth round (105th pick overall) of the 2018 NFL Draft.
He played in all 16 games during his rookie campaign and was impressive, catching 43 passes for 586 yards and five touchdowns.
With the Browns adding Odell Beckham Jr. to the receiving corps this offseason, it became obvious that Callaway would have to fight for the No. 3 slot with Higgins, but when Callaway was playing behind receivers like Jaelen Strong in camp, eyebrows were raised.
Cleveland is coming off of a season in which it went 7-8-1, marking its best finish since winning 10 games all the way back in 2007.