Ryan Tucker returns to practice

Monday, August 21, 2006 The offensive tackle had minor knee surgery on Aug. 1. BEREA (AP) — Finally, some good news for the banged-up Cleveland Browns. Right offensive tackle Ryan Tucker returned to practice Sunday for the first time since undergoing minor knee surgery on Aug. 1. Cleveland's best offensive lineman the past few seasons, Tucker took part in some individual drills. "We're taking it day by day," said the 10-year veteran, who has missed the Browns' first two exhibition games and is unlikely to play against Buffalo on Saturday. "I'd like to be out there, but it probably won't happen. It takes me a few games to get into game shape no matter what happens out here. "The important thing for me is to get healthy. I don't want to rush it early on and delay my return." While Tucker is out, Kirk Chambers has started in his spot. Wants to play before opener Tucker wants to play in at least one game before the Sept. 10 opener against New Orleans. "I don't know anyone who doesn't need practice," said Tucker, who could return for the Aug. 31 preseason finale against Chicago. Beginning with center LeCharles Bentley suffering a season-ending knee injury on Day 2 of training camp, the Browns have had an assortment of sore spots. Starting cornerbacks Gary Baxter and Daylon McCutcheon are sidelined, backup center Bob Hallen abruptly retired with a back problem and several other players have been slowed by aches and pains. Droughns off to court Meanwhile, running back Reuben Droughns will miss practice today for a court hearing in the Denver area on charges of harassment and assault stemming from a May 12 disturbance with his wife, Kellie, at their home in Centennial, Colo. A police report states Droughns threw his wife to the ground and onto a bed before throwing her outside and locking the door. Droughns, who played with the Denver Broncos until a trade last year, could get six to 18 months in jail if convicted of assault and up to six months in jail if convicted of harassment. Days before his arrest on the domestic charges, a jury in the Cleveland suburb of Medina acquitted Droughns of drunken driving, finding he was not impaired by alcohol when a state trooper stopped him Nov. 1. Droughns, who rushed for 1,232 yards last season, expects to be back for practice Tuesday. "This is my cathedral right here when I'm on the football field," he said. "I leave all my outside problems alone."