Browns lose LB Christian Kirksey for season following chest surgery

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Browns linebacker Christian Kirksey underwent season-ending surgery to repair a torn pectoral muscle.

Cleveland Browns' Christian Kirksey returns an interception during an NFL football organized team activity session at the team's training facility Wednesday, May 22, 2019, in Berea, Ohio.

Cleveland Browns’ Christian Kirksey returns an interception during an NFL football organized team activity session at the team’s training facility Wednesday, May 22, 2019, in Berea, Ohio. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

CLEVELAND (AP) – Browns linebacker Christian Kirksey underwent season-ending surgery to repair a torn pectoral muscle.

A team captain, Kirksey was injured during playing against the New York Jets on Sept. 16. He was placed on injured reserve Sept. 21 and had the operation Wednesday.

The Browns expect Kirksey to make a full recovery, but his loss cuts into their experience and they’ll miss his on-field leadership. Rookie Mack Wilson is starting in Kirksey’s spot.

It’s the second straight season Kirksey has had shortened by injury. A third-round pick in 2014, Kirksey played in all 16 games in his first four seasons before suffering a hamstring injury and missing the final seven in 2018.

The Browns signed him to a four-year, $38 million extension in 2017.

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