It has also been reported that the Browns claimed running back Thomas Clayton off of waivers from the New England Patriots, but neither move has yet been confirmed by the team.
Davis, a 2009 sixth-round draft pick out of Clemson, has had little impact since arriving in Cleveland. He showed signs of serious talent during the preseason last year, but landed on the injured reserve list just a few weeks into the regular season.
Back and healthy for 2010, Davis was expected to compete for playing time, especially after the season ending injury to rookie running back Montario Hardesty. However, Davis has only four carries this season for nine yards, and has been inactive for three of the last four games.
Bruiser Peyton Hillis has quickly established himself as the starter in Cleveland's backfield, but the Browns have been searching for an effective complement back all season long. The team felt that last year's star Jerome Harrison was not the answer, and he was shipped off two weeks ago in a trade for Eagles running back Mike Bell.
Even with Harrison gone, Hardesty on IR and Bell still adjusting to the system, Davis was unable to get on the field and the team has decided to go in another direction.
Clayton, who played college football for Florida State and Kansas State, was originally a sixth-round pick of the San Francisco 49ers in 2007. He has spent time with the 49ers and Patriots and was signed to the Browns' practice squad in mid-September. He was re-signed to the Patriots two weeks later and subsequently released this past weekend.
While the Browns obviously feel that Clayton has potential, it is hard to believe that he has more upside than a player who has spent the past two seasons in the Browns' system and is still very much unproven.
It is more likely that the coaching staff had soured on Davis and decided it best to part ways, much like with Harrison two weeks ago.
The release of Davis comes as a surprise to fans who have been clamoring all season long for the team to give the young speedster a chance. Another team is likely to jump on the opportunity to sign the college star who kept C.J. Spiller on the bench for two years, and Browns fans will be left to wonder what could have been.