BEREA, Ohio — Cleveland Browns linebacker Anthony Walker Jr. A source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter that he will need season-ending surgery after suffering a torn quad tendon during Thursday’s win over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The injury, confirmed by an MRI on Friday, is expected to take five to seven months to heal, the source said.
Walker left the field with the injury in the third quarter of the 29-17 Browns victory. He lay face down for several minutes before the trainers helped him into the carriage.
“He’s a huge, huge, huge part of our football team, what he gives us on the field and off the field,” Browns coach Kevin Stefanski said Friday ahead of the MRI results.
Walker, 27, had played six times against Pittsburgh before the injury. He had a team-leading 113 tackles and one sack in 13 games last season, his first with Cleveland.
Jacob Phillips is expected to take over for Walker as the Browns’ starting linebacker. Phillips had a team-high seven tackles and a sack against the Steelers.
“We have a ton of confidence in him,” Stefanski said of Phillips. “He plays like he plays [Thursday] Night, I think he can really impact the game.”
The Browns lost their other starting linebacker, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramova, to a quad injury Thursday. Owusu-Koramoah spent several minutes in the medical tent before heading into the locker room.