Browns bench S Randall for Steelers game

Cleveland safety Damarious Randall, who was ejected for a helmet-to-helmet hit against Pittsburgh wide receiver Diontae Johnson the last time the two teams met, has been ruled out of Sunday's game against the Steelers, the Browns announced Saturday.

Offensive lineman Greg Robinson (concussion) also was downgraded to out, the Browns announced.

Randall did not make the trip to Pittsburgh due to a coach's decision. Head coach Freddie Kitchens benched Randall as the result of something that occurred in the past week, according to a league source at Cleveland.com. Randall wasn't involved in early position drills on Friday that were open to the media.

The defensive back said he received death threats after the hit that led to his ejection from the Nov. 14 game, which Cleveland won 21-7. He is also appealing a $28,075 fine.

"How is it, from the standpoint, after the hit ... I get so many death threats, so many people calling me names, people saying, 'Oh, I hope you get hurt, I'm going to kill you, this and that,'" the 27-year-old Randall told Cleveland.com after news of the death threats broke. "And it's OK for fans to do it to us, but then when we say something back, it's a problem, we get in trouble. I just never understood that."

Randall, who apologized for the hit on Instagram after the game, dismissed the notion that the backlash could have been amplified after defensive end Myles Garrett hit Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph in the head with his helmet.

Randall, 27, has started all seven games he has played for the 5-6 Browns this season and has 35 tackles, but does not have an interception. In his fifth NFL season, the former member of the Green Bay Packers (2015-17) has 14 career interceptions, two touchdowns and 262 tackles in 61 games (52 starts).

--Field Level Media