The Cleveland Browns say Boyce Green is special to...

By ROBERTO DIAS, UPI Sports Writer

BEREA, Ohio -- The Cleveland Browns say Boyce Green is special to them, but the third-year running back often thinks otherwise.

Last season, Green led the Browns with 673 yards on 202 carries. He did not score any touchdowns, but he did establish a reputation as a dependable runner in the one-back, I-formation.


Head coach Marty Schottenheimer made some changes this year, though. Kevin Mack was signed as a free agent and now teams with Earnest Byner in the backfield.

Green has been relegated to special team duty, something he manages to approach with zest. He says he has not asked the Browns to trade him.

'I really like Cleveland -- I like living here,' said the 5-foot-11, 215-pound product of Carson-Newman. 'I still like playing for the Browns, though maybe there are times when I wish I were playing more.

'I can understand the team using Kevin Mack now. He's a really good runner. But I feel my progress was halted just when I was starting to mature. I won't become a better player playing on special teams.'

Schottenheimer says Green has been 'a positive force' playing on punt and kickoff coverages.


'Boyce is an excellent role player,' says the head coach. 'True, he may be a bit disappointed that he doesn't play in the backfield anymore.

'But we're trying to build a winning tradition here. Boyce knows that, accepts that and wants to be a part of it.'

Only two players in the 35-year NFL history of the Browns have rushed for more than the 1,170 yards Green racked up in his first two pro seasons -- Jim Brown (2,469) and Bobby Mitchell (1,243).

Both Brown and Mitchell are enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Green says that is 'an impossible dream for me.'

'Not playing much tends to give you doubts about yourself,' he said. 'I think sometimes about my rookie year and last year and say 'I did that?'

'But the mood doesn't last long. I know I'm an insurance policy in case someone else gets hurt. I only wish somebody else was my insurance instead.'

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