NFL

Browns confirm Mayfield to start against Steelers after shoulder injury

By Sports Desk October 29, 2021

Baker Mayfield will return from a shoulder injury for the Cleveland Browns in Sunday's game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski confirmed the news on Friday after the quarterback missed their 17-14 win over the Denver Broncos in Week 7 with a torn labrum in his left shoulder.

Mayfield's absence broke his streak of 51 consecutive starts for the Browns, but he will return after a one-week layoff.

"Medically, he’s ready to go," Stefanski told reporters on Friday, confirming Mayfield will start. "Our doctors, our trainers, the second opinions felt very comfortable about that.

"Baker's feels that he's ready. He feels he's ready to help this team win."

The 2018 NFL Draft top pick has been able to participate in three days of practice this week.

Case Keenum started in Mayfield's absence against the Broncos, completing 21 of 33 attempts for 199 yards and one touchdown.

Mayfield, who is in the fourth year of his five-year rookie deal, has thrown at 67.1 per cent this season for 1,474 yards, including six touchdowns and three interceptions.

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    Bowles told reporters Brady's absence was planned prior to training camp and will not affect the seven-time Super Bowl champion's availability for Tampa Bay's season opener at Dallas on September 11th.

    "This is something we talked about before training camp started," Bowles said. "We allotted this time because [Brady] wanted to get in and get chemistry with the guys and go through two weeks of training camp."

    Brady, who turned 45 last week, is entering his 23rd NFL season after re-signing with the Buccaneers in March following a 40-day retirement after the 2021 campaign.

    The legendary quarterback was not slated to play in Saturday's preseason opener against Miami or the Bucs' game at Tennessee the following week. Veteran Blaine Gabbert and 2021 second-round pick Kyle Trask are expected to receive the majority of practice reps during Brady’s absence. 

    "Knowing he wasn’t going to play the first two games, he didn't want to take away reps from Blaine and Kyle, as well as [Ryan Griffin], as far as going into these next two games," Bowles said. 

    Bowles added that he wasn’t concerned about the missed practice time impacting Brady's preparation for the regular season, or any effects his departure may have on Tampa Bay's offence.

    "Obviously, there's always going to be doubt, but I have a pretty high level of confidence, yes," he stated. 

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    The 30-year-old spent his entire career with New England after being selected in the fourth round of the 2014 draft.

    "It has been an honour to represent my family, my teammates and the people of New England as a Patriot!," White wrote in an Instagram post.

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    "I would say the only thing that gets frustrating is if you hear it every day or if you see it every day," he said.

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