Browns notes: Terrance Mitchell ready to return, Denzel Ward still in concussion protocol

Baker Mayfield reflects on winning the Heisman a year ago

Daryl Ruiter
December 05, 2018 - 6:47 pm

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

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Berea, OH (92.3 The Fan) – Cornerback Terrance Mitchell is set to return from injured reserve and Denzel Ward will likely miss this week’s game with a concussion.  

Such has been life in the Browns secondary this season – get one player back, lose another.

Mitchell broke his right wrist in the second quarter of the Browns’ 45-42 overtime loss at Oakland Sept. 30 and he missed nine weeks. He is expected to be activated from injured reserve later this week.

“It was more like therapeutic,” Mitchell said. “It's however you look at it. It kind of helped me, honestly, appreciate the game a lot more.”

In four games Mitchell totaled an interception, three pass break-ups, two forced fumbles and a fumble recovery going down and the hope is he’ll pick up right where he left off.

“It’s real important, man,” cornerback T.J. Carrie said. “T-Mitch, he’s been very productive in the games that he’s been here, the games he’s played in. A very highly talented guy. Knows the game, he’s played it for a while. It’s always good to get another dominant cornerback out there.”

Ward suffered a concussion in the first half Sunday at Houston and is unlikely to play this week against Carolina because he remains in the league’s concussion protocol.

“I think we definitely lose his ability and his capability as a teammate,” Carrie said, “but I think that for so long we’ve had to battle with injury throughout this season that we’ve always had to have the next man up mentality and every cornerback that’s come in – even myself – we’ve all be able to hold ourselves to a higher standard and playing great football. If we do lose Denzel then we got a bunch of guys that’s gonna come in and step up.”

Heisman house – With the Heisman Trophy set to be handed out Saturday night in New York, rookie quarterback and last year’s winner Baker Mayfield was asked to reflect on his experience winning the award.

“This time last year was a special time,” Mayfield said.

“Just to be invited honestly was an unbelievable experience. To go on stage after they call your name, it is a feeling that you can’t really describe. I know it is cheesy, but it is the corniest way to describe it. Really though, you are sitting there in front of the stage looking at all of the past Heisman winners, guy you have seen highlights of for years all grown up. You played the NCAA Football game on PlayStation or Xbox and you have watched those guys. It is something you could only dream of, and to be up there it is a lot of fun.”

So where is his trophy now?

“My parents’ house on the dining room table,” Mayfield said. “Dad uses it as a paper holder. He tips his coffee into it every morning. Sadly, that is what he does.”

Mayfield’s successor – Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray – along with Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and Ohio State QB Dwayne Haskins are this year’s finalists.

Cast your ballots – Browns punter Britton Colquitt and Ward continue to lead the AFC in Pro Bowl fan voting at their respective positions according to tabulations released by the league Wednesday.

New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees has garnered the most overall votes from fans – over 950,000 of them – to date.

Fan voting ends Dec. 13 and accounts for a third of the overall Pro Bowl selection process. NFL players and coaches will cast their votes on Friday, December 14. 

The 88 Pro Bowlers will be announced on the 18th.

Practice squad suspension – Defensive lineman Daniel Ekuale was been suspended without pay for four games for violating the NFL policy on performance-enhancing substances the league announced Wednesday.

Ekuale, who has been placed on the suspended by commissioner/exempt list, will serve his suspension immediately.

In conjunction with Ekuale’s suspension and offensive lineman Kyle Kalis’ elevation to the active roster last week the Browns added offensive lineman Mason Gentry and receiver Daniel Williams to the practice squad Wednesday.  

Injury report – DNP: OL Austin Corbett (foot), C JC Tretter (ankle), DT Larry Ogunjobi (bicep), CB Denzel Ward (concussion), RB Duke Johnson Jr. (personal/not injury related), DB Phillip Gaines (knee)

Limited: TE David Njoku (knee)

Full: LB Jamie Collins (shoulder), LB Joe Schobert (knee), TE Seth DeValve (calf), DB Tavierre Thomas (abdomen), Jermaine Whitehead (knee)