Browns CBs Denzel Ward, Greedy Williams 'getting close' - News & Notes

Injured cornerbacks Denzel Ward and Greedy Williams, both of whom have missed the past four games with hamstring injuries, are "getting close" to returning to the field.

Time's on their side, as the Browns are off this weekend with a bye, and it appears they're nearing the end of their respective recoveries from injuries that occurred within 10 minutes of each other on the practice field way back in Week 3.

"We will wait and see," Browns coach Freddie Kitchens said. "We do not have to put an injury report out until next Wednesday. They are getting close."

Ward and Williams did not participate in practice during Weeks 4 and 5 before increasing their workload to limited participants Week 6. 

Ward, a Pro Bowler in his rookie season, said he felt like he was ready to go by Friday of last week, but, at that point, acknowledged it was best for veterans T.J. Carrie and Terrance Mitchell to start because of their knowledge of the game plan.

Time is the best healer for an injury as fickle as a hamstring, and Ward has an extra 14 days to get it right before the Browns' trip to New England.

"It has been very irritating," Ward said. "I just wanted to be out there with my teammates and everything. But I am looking forward to getting back and helping this team."

Check out photos of the Browns working during their bye week by team photographer Matt Starkey

-- Baker Mayfield didn't participate in Tuesday's practice as Kitchens looked to give his quarterback "a break physically" after dealing with a hip injury Sunday.

Kitchens said he had no doubt Mayfield would be ready to face the Patriots.

"He stretched and loosened up and mentally we worked some of the offense today through different situations and he was with me all during that process," Kitchens said. "He is hooked up mentally, it is just we have 10 games left, so we have to get him ready to play 10 games."

-- Browns run game coordinator/running backs coach Stump Mitchell said patience is the biggest improvement he's seen from Nick Chubb during his second NFL season.

Chubb posted his second 100-yard game of the season Sunday against the Seahawks, rushing for 122 yards on 20 carries. He's second in the league with 607 yards, trailing by just 11 behind Carolina's Christian McCaffrey.

"He's giving the defenders the impression that he is going where he is not going," Mitchell said. "So I think he is doing a good job of doing that and he is making some good runs. He is getting some blocking from everybody else that is involved, but he is doing some things on his own as well."

-- John Lilly was the tight ends coach at the University of Georgia when Ricky Seals-Jones was a highly touted wide receiver prospect. Even then, he saw the potential for Seals-Jones to one day become a tight end.

Now, he's the one coaching Seals-Jones, whose role continues to expand in Cleveland's offense.

A waiver claim before the start of the regular season, Seals-Jones has seven catches for 143 yards and a team-best two touchdowns. He played the most snaps of any tight end Sunday against the Seahawks in a role that has grown since starter David Njoku went down Week 2 with a broken wrist.

"I think one of the really neat things about our team so far this year really across positions is when guys have gone down, there has been somebody else ready to step in and play at a high level," Lilly said. "That is why they are all here. That is what they all want. I think that is the expectation, you hate it when something like that happens for someone but you are excited for the guys that have the opportunity and hope they are excited to take advantage of it."

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