Richmond Times-Dispatch

Calf strain sidelines Browns’Ward

Starting corner leads the league in passes defensed

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CLEVELAND— The Cleveland Browns are down another defensive star.

Starting cornerback

DenzelWard, who leads the NFL in passes defensed and is coming off his best game this season, will miss time with a strained calf he sustained in Sunday’s win over Philadelph­ia.

Ward’s injury is just the latest to a big-name player for the Browns (73), who are already missing dynamic end Myles Garrett. He’ll miss his second straight game this week at Jacksonvil­le as he recovers from COVID-19.

Garrett, who has 9½ sacks and made several game-swinging plays, tested positive for the virus last Friday. It’s not known when he’ll return.

Cleveland has managed to stay in the playoff picture despite not having running back Nick Chubb for four weeks, starting guard Wyatt Teller for three and wide receiver

Odell Beckham Jr., who is out for the season with a knee injury.

On their day off, the team also placed defensive end Joe Jackson on the COVID-19 reserve list. He joins Garrett, fullback Andy Janovich and offensive lineman Chris Hubbard. Janovich and Hubbard have also tested positive for the virus.

Ward leads the league with 15 passes defenses. Other than Garrett, he’s easily been Cleveland’s best defensive player.

49ers’Williams gets PED suspension

SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Injured San Francisco 49ers cornerback K’Waun Williams has been suspended two games for violating the league’s policy on performanc­e-enhancing substances.

Williams was already sidelined by a high ankle sprain but now will be suspended the next two weeks.

He is eligible to return after the Week 13 game against Buffalo.

San Francisco also signed safety Chris Edwards to a one-year deal.

Victory over Bucs buoys Goff, Rams

TAMPA, Fla. — Jared Goff likes how the Los Angeles Rams are shaping up.

“We can be as good as we want to be, honestly,”

the fifth-year quarterbac­k said after Monday night’s 27-24 victory over Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. “We’ve got it all in front of us. Everything is there for us to take.”

Goff threw for 376 yards and three touchdowns, and MattGay kicked a 40yard field goal with 2:36 remaining to lift the Rams (7-3) back into first place in the NFC West.

Goff completed 39 of 51 passes, including short scoring throws to Robert Woods, Van Jefferson and CamAkers. The Rams’ defense pressured Brady all night and sealed the win with rookie safety Jordan Fuller’s second intercepti­on of the six-time Super Bowl champion.

Goff threw a pair of intercepti­ons, too, helping the Bucs remain close in the second half.

But when the Rams needed him to stand tall, he rebounded to lead them down the field to retake the lead after Brady tied it with his second TD pass.

CooperKupp had 11 receptions for 145 yards and Woods finished with 10 catches for 130 yards. Both caught passes on the eight-play, 53-yard drive Goff led to move Los Angeles into position for Gay’s winning kick.

Brady was 26 of 48 for 216 yards and two touchdowns.

Manning, Woodson advance onHall list

Peyton Manning, CharlesWoo­dson, Jared Allen and Calvin Johnson are first-year eligible players to make the list of 25 semifinali­sts for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s class of 2021.

Joining them are four players who previously have been eligible, but never made the semifinals: Eric Allen, Willie Anderson, Cornelius Bennett

and Rodney Harrison.

A player must be retired for five seasons before being considered for entry to the Canton, Ohio, shrine.

The group of 25 announced Tuesday also includes Ronde Barber

(Virginia), Tony Boselli, LeRoy Butler, Alan Faneca, Torry Holt, John Lynch, Clay Matthews, SamMills, Richard Seymour, Steve Tasker, Fred Taylor, Zach Thomas, HinesWard, ReggieWayn­e, Patrick Willis, DarrenWood­son and BryantYoun­g.

Candidates will be trimmed to 15 modernday finalists who will be considered for entry by the selection committee during Super Bowl week in February. Inductions are scheduled for next August, when the 2020 class and a special centennial class also will be enshrined after the COVID-19 pandemic forced postponeme­nt of those ceremonies last summer.

Also on the voting ballot in the coaching category is TomFlores; in the contributo­rs category is Bill Nunn; and in the seniors category is Drew Pearson.

Between four and eight new members will be selected.

Elsewhere

Ravens: Baltimore placed outside linebacker PernellMcP­hee on the reserve/COVID-19 list, making him ineligible to play Thursday night in Pittsburgh.

McPhee joins running backs Mark Ingram and J.K. Dobbins, along with defensive tackle Brandon Williams, on the COVID19 list.

Titans: Tennessee placed a pair of starters on injured reserve in linebacker Jayon Brown and left tackle Ty Sambrailo.

The Titans also designated three-time Pro Bowl punter BrettKern, cornerback Tye Smith and cornerback Kristian Fulton to return from injured reserve Tuesday, opening the 21-day window to practice without counting on the 53-man roster. They also waived defensive back Greg Mabin and punter TrevorDani­el.

Brown hurt his left elbow in the Titans’ 30-24 overtime win over Baltimore. He’s currently the Titans’ leading tackler with 76.

Jaguars: Jacksonvil­le placed defensive end Josh Allen (knee), cornerback

D. J. Hayden (hamstring) and safety Daniel Thomas

(arm) on injured reserve.

Hayden is ineligible to return this season since he already spent one stint on IR. Allen and Thomas are eligible to return after a three-game absence. All three starters were injured in Sunday’s 27-3 loss to Pittsburgh, the team’s ninth consecutiv­e loss.

The Jaguars (1-9) also placed kicker Chase McLaughlin on the COVID-19 list, possibly meaning Aldrick Rosas

will kick Sunday against Cleveland.

Jets: New York placed running back La’Mical Perine (high ankle sprain) and kicker SamFicken (groin) on injured reserve.

 ?? THE ASSOCIATED PRESS ?? Cleveland cornerback DenzelWard (21), sidelined with a strained calf, and end Myles Garrett, out with COVID-19, are the Browns’ top two defensive players.
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Cleveland cornerback DenzelWard (21), sidelined with a strained calf, and end Myles Garrett, out with COVID-19, are the Browns’ top two defensive players.

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