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26.12.2019 08:57
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BEREA https://www.brownsfanshop.com/JC-Tretter-Jersey , Ohio (AP) — Already thin, the Browns‘ group of wide receivers has gotten skeletal.Rookie Derrick Willies broke his collarbone in practice Friday and will miss Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers and likely several more, further depleting a receiving unit lacking experienced playmakers.Willies came off the bench last week after Rashard Higgins injured his right knee and made the game’s biggest play in an overtime win. But both he and Higgins will miss this week’s game, and the Browns (2-2-1) will have to go further down their depth chart.Rookie Damion Ratley will likely be active and fill in for Willies as Cleveland’s No. 3 receiver behind Jarvis Landry and rookie Antonio Callaway. Running back Duke Johnson, who led the team in receptions last season, can also line up wide or in the slot.A sixth-round pick from Texas A&M, Ratley is excited about the opportunity.“I’m going to try to bring the best of my abilities in everything I can do, catching and running, doing everything I can to help the team where he was going to help the team,” Ratley said. “Next man up, that’s what it is.”Ratley has been inactive for just two games and hasn’t played the past two weeks. But seeing Willies make the most of his chance against the Ravens inspired him.“I can’t get mad because he was performing in places I wasn’t performing,” Ratley said. “It hurts, not being active. It killed me Ozzie Newsome Jersey , but I’ve got to do what I’ve got to do to help the team win. I’ve been ready to contribute whenever I was needed, whenever I was called on, that was my mentality. I just kept going and now it’s my time, my opportunity to do what I need to do.”Willies came through for the Browns last week after Higgins went down while making a block in the fourth quarter.An undrafted free agent from Texas Tech, Willies turned a short pass from quarterback Baker Mayfield into a 39-yard gain in overtime to help set up Cleveland’s game-winning field goal with 2 seconds left.Willies finished with three catches for 61 yards.It’s not known how long Higgins will be sidelined, and his status could force the Browns to sign another receiver. The Browns met with former Cowboys star and free agent Dez Bryant during the summer, but the sides couldn’t reach agreement on a contract.Cleveland worked former Tennessee receiver Rishard Matthews earlier this week, but for now the team will push ahead with Landry and its rookies. BEREA, Ohio (AP) — Baker Mayfield dragged more than a Heisman Trophy with him into the NFL. There was other baggage, including a well-earned reputation as being cocky, fiery, brash and over-the-top.He hasn’t changed much.And that’s what the Browns love about their rookie starting quarterback, who didn’t need long to firmly plant his own flag in Cleveland.“He walk it Briean Boddy-Calhoun Jersey ,” receiver Jarvis Landry said, “like he talk it.”As Mayfield prepares to make his first pro start in a few days at Oakland, his confidence isn’t the only thing impressing teammates eager to see if the No. 1 overall pick can build upon his sensational debut last week against the New York Jets — a stunning performance that prompted coach Hue Jackson to switch QBs.While he is on the verge of his first visit to play in front of the Raiders’ notoriously rowdy “Black Hole”, Mayfield is showing no fear or signs of complacency.The 23-year-old did not speak to reporters on Wednesday and the only time he was seen in Cleveland’s locker room was to grab the playbook out of his locker.“He’s been real focused,” said left guard Joel Bitonio, one of the team’s captains. “He’s taken the lead in a few meetings just because that’s what the starting quarterback does.”Sooner than the Browns or anyone expected, Mayfield has risen on the depth chart and vaulted from high-profile backup and future QB to the present one.And while it may have happened quickly, Mayfield has shown since the moment the Browns (1-1-1) selected him he’d be prepared for this moment.He’s worked hard, shown humility and remained supportive of Tyrod Taylor, who remains in protocol with a concussion that hastened his benching.Before he was drafted, Mayfield drew comparisons to Johnny Manziel, another Heisman winner who busted for the Browns. The Mayfield-Manziel similarities though, seem to start and stop at their height.“You hear people say Joe Schobert Color Rush Jersey , ‘Oh, he’s Johnny or he’s this or he’s that,’ but since I’ve known him he’s been a great guy,” Bitonio said. “He’s been in the building. He’s a confident guy. I think people see that as a little bit of cockiness, but he’s just confident in what he does and he understands you put in the work and he’s ready to compete and he’s ready to play.“And that’s all you want in a quarterback.”But with Mayfield, there’s a little more.It wasn’t long after replacing Taylor during Thursday’s nationally televised game when Mayfield started talking trash to the Jets defensive linemen. That may have surprised a few of his new teammates, but it’s nothing new for Mayfield, whose on-the-field antics in college didn’t stop at choice words.Mayfield loved to antagonize opponents, whether it was telling Kansas’ fans to “stick to basketball” or celebrating a victory at Ohio State by spiking an Oklahoma flag into the turf.“I followed all that stuff, and again, it’s that ‘Walk it, Talk it,'” Landry said. “He definitely has that attitude and charisma https://www.brownsfanshop.com/Ricardo-Louis-Jersey , and that is contagious.”It remains to be seen how much of Mayfield’s personality rubs off on his teammates. But Raiders coach Jon Gruden believes a quarterback’s nature can mean as much as arm strength or mobility.“Those are the intangibles that you look for that are hard to find,” Gruden said on a conference call. “Do they like the pressure? Do they like the big moment? Some guys come alive, some guys don’t. Some guys can bring out the best in their teammates. Some guys struggle to do that.“But Mayfield has the magic about him. He has the charisma about him that really allows everybody on that team, defensively included to play at a higher level. They know if we can get the ball back to this kid, something good’s going to happen.”Gruden grew up in Ohio rooting for the Browns, and he’s well aware of the team’s two-decades-old search to find a quarterback.With Mayfield, the hunt may be over.“What they have not had is a front-line starter that really can make all of the plays,” Gruden said.“I think Mayfield, if you draw a line under that name, he is the man. He is the story that I think right now is going to become bigger and bigger in Cleveland this year.”NOTES: DE Emmanuel Ogbah (ankle) returned to practice and is expected to play after missing the past two games. … Sunday’s game will be a homecoming of sorts for Jackson, who spent one season as Oakland’s coach. He’ll also be reunited with Gruden as they spent a season coaching together at Pacific. “He taught me football,” Jackson said. “We used to argue every day. I was a wishbone quarterback at the time. I’ve always given Jon credit for where I am today. He helped mold me and shape me into the coach I am a little bit.”

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