Browns’ first-round pick Denzel Ward leaves first practice with ‘little nick’
On Friday, the Cleveland Browns welcomed their new team members to rookie minicamp, which gave us our first glimpse at No. 1 overall pick Baker Mayfield as the Browns’ new franchise quarterback and No. 4 overall pick Denzel Ward as the Browns’ new shutdown cornerback. Unfortunately for Ward, his first day with the team ended with an injury. Fortunately, it sounds like a minor one.
According ESPN’s Dan Graziano, Ward left practice early on Friday with an injury. Before Browns fans panic, they should know that Browns coach Hue Jackson described the injury as a little nick. And Graziano reported that Jackson said they were exercising caution before Ward gets reevaluated Saturday morning.
National champion Alabama had four first-rounders: safety Minkah Fitzpatrick to Miami, DT Da’Ron Payne to Washington, linebacker Rashaan Evans to Tennessee, and wide receiver Calvin Ridley to Atlanta.
There were 22 underclassmen selected, with the Southeastern Conference having 10 players chosen. There were 15 on defense and 17 on offense — with the five QBs matching the 1999 haul and one short of the first round in 1983 that produced Hall of Famers Kelly, Dan Marino and John Elway.
In January, Avril said that he would push to continue playing.
I believe so, Avril said when asked if he will return to the NFL. Right now it’s all about recovery. I had surgery. I’m in the process of recovering. It’s a long process, a long journey. When I get to the end of that, then I’ll figure out what’s next.
For the first time, Maccagnan did not even put a final grade on any of the Top 5 quarterback prospects for fear that word might trickle out and jeopardize the most pivotal decision of his professional life. So, there was no record of the quarterback final grades in the Jets’ digital draft program or on the old-school cards that typically get stacked on one of the two big draft boards. Every other player except Darnold, Mayfield, Rosen, Allen and Jackson had a final grade next to his name. The cards identifying the Top 5 quarterbacks were separated from the rest of the cards.
Jackson bashers say his test score is a harbinger of things to come; that he would be better off using his superb athleticism at wide receiver a la Terrelle Pryor, who incidentally posted the second-lowest Wunderlic score for a quarterback (7) ever recorded.