Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield has been activated off the reserve/COVID-19 list meaning he could play in Saturday's game against the Green Bay Packers.

The Browns QB has been on the COVID-19 list since December, missing Monday's 16-14 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders.

Mayfield is eligible to play on Saturday due to the 10-day rule without clearing testing protocols.

The 26-year-old has completed 216 of 344 passes this season with a completion rate 62.8 percent for 2,603 yards and 13 touchdowns with seven interceptions.

Nick Mullens deputized in Mayfield's absence against the Raiders but only managed one touchdown pass in the loss.

The Browns are currently 7-7 and fourth in the wide-open AFC North, while the Packers have clinched the NFC North divisional title with a 10-3 record.

The Indianapolis Colts have dominated selection for the Pro Bowl with seven players named for the game due to be played on 6 February in Las Vegas for the first time.

Colts' MVP contender running back Jonathan Taylor was among five players confirmed earlier this week but he was joined by six other team-mates as the full NFC and AFC rosters were revealed on Wednesday.

Indianapolis also had center Ryan Kelly, guard Quenton Nelson, defensive tackle DeForest Buckner, linebacker Darius Leonard, cornerback Kenny Moore II and special teams long snapper Luke Rhodes all selected, with the Colts enjoying a run of five wins in six games to sit second in the AFC South.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady had already been named earlier this week for a record 15th Pro Bowl, with Arizona Cardinals' Kyler Murray and Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers joining him as NFC QBs.

The selected AFC quarterbacks were Los Angeles Chargers' Justin Herbert, Baltimore Ravens' Lamar Jackson and Kansas City Chiefs' Patrick Mahomes.

The Chiefs and Chargers had six players selected in total, while the Ravens, Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, San Francisco 49ers and Bucs all had five representatives.

Four rookies were selected in Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase, Atlanta Falcons tight end Kyle Pitts, Chargers offensive tackle Rashawn Slater and Cowboys linebacker Micah Parsons.

The NFC and AFC rosters are determined by a vote of the fans, players and coaches.

Derek Carr was afraid he might have squandered the Las Vegas Raiders' last chance to win Monday when he threw an interception deep in Cleveland territory with the Browns leading by a point. 

The quarterback pleaded with his defense afterward to get him the ball back, vowing to win the game if they did, and that's exactly what happened. 

After Las Vegas forced a three-and-out, Carr drove the Raiders downfield and set up Daniel Carlson for a 48-yard field goal that gave the visitors a 16-14 victory as time expired. 

"After that interception, I told the guys 'Please, I promise we’ll win it, just get the ball back,'" Carr told reporters. "And the defense did, and we were able to go back down the field and win the game." 

Carr was trying to hit Zay Jones deep down the field when Greedy Williams picked it off, and Jones was frustrated on the sidelines after the play, but Carr made sure the receiver knew there was still football to be played. 

"I went to him right after that pick and I said, 'I'm coming right back to you and we're gonna win this game,'" Carr said. "I knew I needed him, and I wanted him to know, not only do I need you, but I believe in you." 

Sure enough, Jones was Carr's main target on the game-winning drive, catching a 12-yard pass for a key third-down conversion, then seeing a 17-yard reception called back by a holding penalty before a 15-yard connection in the closing seconds set up Carlson for the winning kick. 

"I trust him," Carr said of Jones. "I'm just happy that we got the ball back not for my own sake, but so that he could get the ball back in his hands. He won the game for us. It was awesome." 

Victory was especially sweet for the Raiders after several players had publicly aired their displeasure with the NFL moving the game back two days due to a COVID-19 outbreak in the Browns facility. 

Cleveland were missing eight starters, including quarterback Baker Mayfield, not to mention head coach Kevin Stefanski, but the Raiders desperately needed a win having lost five of their previous six games. 

The victory left them at 7-7 and level with the Browns, Miami Dolphins and Denver Broncos in the AFC playoff picture, but they own the tiebreaker over those teams for the 10th spot and are within a game of the six teams ahead of them. 

"It's been a long time coming to win a game like that in the end," said Raiders interim head coach Rich Bisaccia. "We understand the situation we're in and what the playoff race looks like."

The Raiders kept their playoff hopes alive Monday as Daniel Carlson's 48-yard field goal on the game's final play gave Las Vegas a 16-14 victory over the Cleveland Browns. 

Carlson's third field goal of the game was a devastating blow to the Browns, who were on the brink of what would have been a remarkable victory despite playing without eight starters and head coach Kevin Stefanski in a game pushed back two days due to COVID-19 concerns. 

But the home side were left to lament what might have been after Derek Carr engineered the 28th game-winning final drive of his career to put Carlson in range for the winning kick. 

The quarterback got the Raiders off to a hot start, completing his first nine passes of the game as Las Vegas rolled to a touchdown on their opening possession, but the visitors could not find the end zone again as Cleveland's defense stiffened. 

In the meantime, the Browns got their offense on track after star running back Nick Chubb was limited to just 14 yards on six carries in the first half. 

Chubb got the Browns on the scoreboard with a four-yard touchdown run late in the third quarter and played a key part in the drive that set up third-string quarterback Nick Mullens' six-yard TD pass to Harrison Bryant that put the Browns up 14-13 with 3:45 to play. 

The Browns (7-7) intercepted a long heave from Carr on the ensuing Raiders possession but could not run out the clock, giving Las Vegas one last chance at a desperately needed win. 

The Raiders (7-7) had lost five of six games entering Monday, including an ugly 48-9 defeat against the Kansas City Chiefs in their previous game, and another defeat would have put them on the brink of elimination from playoff contention. 

John Johnson III was the only Cleveland Brown activated off the reserve/COVID-19 list on Monday, leaving the team without their first and second-choice quarterbacks.

Baker Mayfield and Case Keenum have both been in health and safety protocols ahead of the delayed game against the Las Vegas Raiders, which had been set to be played on Saturday until the Browns' coronavirus outbreak prompted a reschedule.

Neither player was able to return in time to face the Raiders, although safety Johnson's involvement comes as a boost.

Nick Mullens therefore comes in for his first start as a Brown, having been waived by the Philadelphia Eagles at the start of the year – after leaving the San Francisco 49ers as a free agent – but restricted to the role of spectator until now.

Mullens made 16 starts across 19 games in three years with the Niners but had a miserable 5-11 record when deputising for Jimmy Garoppolo as a starter.

An injury-hit San Francisco had to rely on Mullens for eight starts in 2020, when he threw for 2,437 yards, 12 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Mullens was successful with 78.4 per cent of his pass attempts last season, matching Mayfield's output as Cleveland's starter in 2021.

However, the much-maligned Mayfield is able to push the ball downfield with his 8.95 air yards per attempt, ranking sixth in 2021 among NFL quarterbacks with 50 attempts or more. In 2020, Mullens' 6.59 air yards were the fifth-fewest among the same group.

Keenum, who has had 48 attempts this year, throws an accurate ball with 80.4 per cent of passes for just 6.78 air yards. He deputised for Mayfield in the Week 7 win over the Denver Broncos – the only game Mayfield has not started in the past three seasons – but is also out.

The NFL has been forced to move three games for Week 15 due to the COVID-19 outbreak across the league and the United States.

The Cleveland Browns, who could have been without as many as 20 players, were set to face the Las Vegas Raiders on Saturday, but that clash has been rescheduled for Monday.

The Washington Football Team were preparing to face the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, the same day in which the Seattle Seahawks and the Los Angeles Rams were due to do battle, but both games will now take place on Tuesday.

The NFL announced the changes in a statement, which said: "We have made these schedule changes based on medical advice and after discussion with the NFLPA as we are seeing a new, highly transmissible form of the virus this week resulting in a substantial increase in cases across the league.

"We continue to make decisions in consultation with medical experts to ensure the health and safety of the NFL community."

Due to the changes, all six sides involved will have shorter breaks between Week 15 and 16. The Browns head to the Green Bay Packers on Christmas, while the Raiders, Eagles, Washington, Seahawks and Rams all have two days fewer to prepare for their next games.

The fixture alterations come after the NFL announced updated coronavirus protocols on Thursday, which include fully vaccinated players being allowed to return from quarantine a day after testing positive if they produce two negative tests within 24 hours and are asymptomatic.

Indeed, 32 players were placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Friday alone, after reports on Wednesday suggested around 100 NFL players recently tested positive for the virus across a three-day span.

Last season amid the ongoing global pandemic the NFL completed its season on time but had to reschedule 18 games.

In July, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell warned the 32 teams that no games would be rescheduled under such circumstances again and, instead, forfeits could happen.

Baker Mayfield was among five players to have been placed on the Cleveland Brown's reserve/COVID-19 list on Wednesday.

ESPN reported that the quarterback has tested positive for the virus, making him doubtful for Saturday's home game against the Las Vegas Raiders.

Mayfield will have to produce two negative tests before Saturday in order to participate.

Troy Hill, John Johnson III, Malik McDowell and Ifeadi Odenigbo were also placed onto the reserve/COVID-19 list, while Nate Meadors was moved to the practice squad/COVID-19 list.

The Browns' roster moves came shortly after they had confirmed head coach Kevin Stefanski is isolating after testing positive for coronavirus.

Like Mayfield, Stefanski will have to return two negative tests in order to be on the sidelines on Saturday. If he does not, then special teams co-ordinator Mike Priefer will serve as his temporary replacement.

Acting running backs coach Ryan Cordell has also tested positive for the virus.

On Tuesday, the Browns placed eight players onto the reserve/COVID-19 list, including four offensive starters – wide receiver Jarvis Landry, offensive guard Wyatt Teller, tight end Austin Hooper and left tackle Jedrick Wills Jr.

The Cleveland Browns have confirmed head coach Kevin Stefanski is isolating after testing positive for coronavirus.

Cleveland, who sit second in the AFC North with a 7-6 record in 2021, face the Las Vegas Raiders on Saturday.

However, their coach will not be able to be on the sidelines unless he tests negative twice. If he fails to do so, special teams co-ordinator Mike Priefer will serve as his temporary replacement.

The Browns confirmed the news in a statement published to their official Twitter account. Their post also stated Stefanski is fully vaccinated and has received a booster dose.

Stefanski is said to be feeling well and will take part in the preparations for the Raiders game virtually.

Acting running backs coach Ryan Cordell has also tested positive for the virus.

The Browns, who beat the Baltimore Ravens in Week 14, face the Green Bay Packers, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cincinnati Bengals following their game with Las Vegas.

The Cleveland Browns look set to field a significantly weakened team for Saturday's tussle with the Las Vegas Raiders after losing eight players to the reserve/COVID-19 list.

As they chase a ticket to the postseason, the 7-6 Browns are poised to have to rely on backups at a critical moment, with their ranks suddenly severely depleted.

It was revealed on Tuesday they have lost wide receiver Jarvis Landry, guard Wyatt Teller, tight end Austin Hooper, left tackle Jedrick Wills and defensive end Takkarist McKinley for now. Drew Forbes was named on the same list, with wide receiver JoJo Natson and tight end Ross Travis also sidelined.

The NFL.com website reported all have tested positive for the coronavirus. The Browns have not officially confirmed that to be the case.

Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said meetings with players, virtual rather than in person, would take place during Tuesday afternoon.

He backed his squad to show they have sufficient quality to ride out the situation.

Stefanski said in a news conference: "We've seen, through last season, have seen it this year, guys step up. That's what the NFL's about. You're without guys due to injury or otherwise and guys step up. And that's why we have a bunch of players on this team that we trust."

It remains to be seen whether David Njoku, Anthony Walker Jr and punter Jamie Gillan, who all missed the 24-22 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday due to being on the reserve/COVID-19 list, will be available for the game with the 6-7 Raiders.

Stefanski said, quoted on cleveland.com: "I don't have an update on those guys in particular. Again, we'll just follow the protocols on each one of them and then we're just going to focus on today. I think that's the prudent thing to do and make sure we do a great job with our virtual meetings, do a great job with this walkthrough."

The Baltimore Ravens are planning for Lamar Jackson to be fit to face the Green Bay Packers next weekend.

Jackson suffered a sprained right ankle during the Ravens' 24-22 defeat to the Cleveland Browns on Sunday.

The quarterback had been doubtful for the Week 14 game due to an ankle problem and threw only four passes for 17 yards before taking a hit in the first play of the second quarter and being replaced by Tyler Huntley 

Ravens head coach John Harbaugh on Monday revealed he hopes Jackson can face the Packers, but it is too early to know if he will be available.

He said: "The plans are right now, in my mind, for Lamar to be out there.

"So, we'll see where it goes this week. If he can go, he'll go. If not, Tyler will be the quarterback. That's where we're at."

Harbaugh said Jackson had not sustained a high-ankle sprain and "we'll just have to see what it is from there, and how he feels this week going forward."

Baltimore lead the AFC North with an 8-5 record, narrowly ahead of the Cincinnati Bengals (7-6) and Cleveland Browns (7-6) with four regular season games remaining.

Jackson is enjoying a strong season for the Ravens, completing 242 of 378 passes for 2,865 yards with a 64 percent completion rate for 16 touchdowns.

He has also allowed 13 interceptions, having only committed 18 across his previous three seasons.

Following Jackson's exit, Huntley almost pulled off a comeback victory for the Ravens against the Browns.

The Ravens also confirmed on Monday that safety Tony Jefferson is back after being signed to the practice squad.

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson is facing a stint on the sidelines in the run to the NFL playoffs after suffering a right ankle sprain in Sunday's 24-22 loss to the Cleveland Browns.

Jackson was doubtful pre-game with an ankle sprain and managed only four of four passes for 17 yards before taking a hit and making way for Tyler Huntley.

The former MVP left Baltimore's locker room in a protective boot.

Baltimore lead the AFC North with an 8-5 record, narrowly ahead of the Cincinnati Bengals (7-6) and Browns (7-6) with four regular season games remaining.

"Lamar has an ankle sprain. We'll look at it more [Monday] and we'll see where we're at," Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said at the post-game news conference.

"We'll see how he responds [Monday], we'll see how it responds."

Jackson is enjoying a strong season for the Ravens, completing 242 of 378 passes for 2,865 yards with a 64 percent completion rate for 16 touchdowns.

He also allowed 13 interceptions, having only committed 18 across his previous three seasons.

In Jackson's absence, backup Huntley almost pulled off a comeback victory for the Ravens against the Browns, offering hope they can still fire without their star quarterback.

"Tyler showed a lot of grit, and I felt like the whole team did that," Harbaugh said. "That's who we are and that's why we have a chance to still win the championship in the AFC North and go on from there. That's what we'll be fighting to do in the next four weeks."

The Kansas City Chiefs are making statement after statement as they power towards the postseason, with a 48-9 trouncing of the Las Vegas Raiders just the latest.

Andy Reid's Chiefs were somewhere near their ruthless best in the NFL on Sunday, winning a sixth straight game to improve to 9-4, Patrick Mahomes completing 20 of 24 passes for 258 yards and two touchdowns in the rout.

It moved him third all-time in the most yards thrown by a Chiefs quarterback, above Alex Smith, with a total of 17,794 yards.

Running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire rushed for 37 yards and two touchdowns as the Chiefs looked formidable in defense and offense at Arrowhead Stadium.

A fumble on the first play from Josh Jacobs was clinically punished by Mike Hughes as the Chiefs had a dream start, and by half-time they led 35-3.

Curiously, they won and limited their opponents to exactly nine points for a third successive game, after previous successes against the Dallas Cowboys and Denver Broncos.

Tyreek Hill went through 1,000 yards receiving for the season as he took four catches for 76 yards to reach 1,030, for his fourth 1,000-yard season in the NFL.

Mahomes was masterful though, the quarterback ending a two-game run without a TD pass by posting a season-best pass completion rate of 83.3 per cent. He stretched his record run to 20 consecutive regular season wins in QB starts in November or later.

For the Raiders, it was more of the same against the Chiefs, having become accustomed to losses in this game. They have won just three of 18 games in the rivalry since Reid was appointed head coach of the Chiefs in 2013.


JACKSON DOWN, BROWNS BOOSTED

Star quarterback Lamar Jackson was carted out of the Ravens' clash with the Cleveland Browns, and it was a day to forget for Baltimore.

A 24-22 loss means they slipped to 8-5 for the season, while the Browns improved to 7-6, bolstering their Wild Card hopes.

Jackson, doubtful pre-game with an ankle sprain, managed only four of four passes for 17 yards before taking a hit and making way for Tyler Huntley (27 of 38 for 270 yards and one TD).

The Ravens, frontrunners in the AFC North, almost pulled off a stunning comeback against their divisional rivals, having trailed 24-6 at half-time, but it proved just beyond them.

Baker Mayfield went 22-of-32 for 190 yards and two touchdowns for the Browns.

NEWTON WOES PERSIST

Cam Newton has now lost 11 straight games as a Carolina Panthers starter and held himself largely culpable for the latest in that long line.

He also became the first quarterback in NFL history with a rushing touchdown in each of his first four games of a season, but Carolina's 29-21 loss to the Atlanta Falcons was a sickener for the former MVP.

He had 15 completions from 23 passes for 178 yards, splitting QB duties with PJ Walker, as turnovers and failed drives blighted the day for the Panthers.

Newton said: "Pretty much everything they did, we knew was coming. I've got to do a better job of protecting the football. I hold myself to a high standard to do those things and when it doesn't happen it's just inexcusable.

"We had such a great momentum for those drives and they were just drive killers, game killers in essence

"We were driving on both of those turnovers I had. To be optimistic, you see what we're capable of, but we've got to do it for ourselves."

There is a new leader in the AFC after the New England Patriots' remarkable victory over the Buffalo Bills on Monday, stretching their winning streak to seven games.

But after battling the elements as well as the Bills in Buffalo, Bill Belichick's Pats have a bye in Week 14.

That allows others the opportunity to recover ground – including the Bills, who face New England great Tom Brady on Sunday. It is not a meeting they have enjoyed previously, as Stats Perform explores.

Buffalo Bills (7-5) @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-3)

Just like Belichick, Brady has enjoyed taking on the Bills – and he had plenty of opportunities to do so with the Pats in the AFC East.

Brady is 32-3 against Buffalo in his 35 career starts, with no starting quarterback in NFL history recording more wins against a single team. His .914 winning percentage in these games represents the highest by a starting QB against one team (minimum 20 starts).

Aged 44, Brady remains one of the best passers around, with a league-leading 74 TD passes over the past two seasons.

Bills QB Josh Allen is joint-third on that list (63 TDs), and Buffalo need his offense to fire, making the most of the platform afforded to him by the defense. After the 14-10 loss to the Pats, the Bills became the first team this season to lose two games in which they allowed 14 points or fewer (also 9-6 at Jacksonville).

Las Vegas Raiders (6-6) @ Kansas City Chiefs (8-4)

The Chiefs are one of three 8-4 AFC teams close behind the 9-4 Pats and will back themselves to tie that record in a matchup they have dominated.

Since 2013, when Andy Reid was appointed head coach, the Chiefs are 14-3 against the Raiders, with only New England against the New York Jets (16 wins) and the Seattle Seahawks against the San Francisco 49ers (15) beating a divisional opponent on more occasions in that span.

This is a time of year in which Patrick Mahomes tends to excel, now on a record run of 19 consecutive regular season wins in QB starts in November or later, but Kansas City's turnaround on defense has been key to their recent improvement.

The Chiefs head into this game having become the first team in NFL history to have a five-game streak allowing 25 or more points and a five-game streak allowing fewer than 20 points in the same season, with the latter sequence ongoing.

Baltimore Ravens (8-4) @ Cleveland Browns (6-6)

Another 8-4 AFC rival, along with the Tennessee Titans, the Ravens again face the Browns in the tightly contested AFC North.

Cleveland's previous game – before their Week 13 bye – was in Baltimore, making them the first team since 1991 to play the same team in back-to-back regular season games, although the Browns beat the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 17 last year before beating them again the following week in the playoffs.

The Ravens won 16-10 in Week 12 as Browns QB Baker Mayfield completed just 48.6 per cent of his passes, meaning he now has a 2-6 career record when completing no more than half of his pass attempts.

Lamar Jackson was far from convincing in that game, tossing four interceptions, but he had his sixth career game with at least 250 passing yards and 50 rushing yards against the Steelers last week – five of those coming in 2021. The Pittsburgh game was his second loss from those six.

Elsewhere...

The Washington Football Team believe again after four straight wins to move into a playoff place at 6-6, aiming to become only the third team to start 2-6 and make the postseason. One of the previous two examples was Washington last year, who won both games against the Dallas Cowboys, teeing up a potential three-game winning streak against this week's opponents – just their third ever.

Aaron Rodgers has claimed he "owns" the Chicago Bears, and the numbers show exactly what the Green Bay Packers QB means. He is 21-5 in the regular season and 1-0 in the postseason against the Bears, who will fear this week's matchup.

The Cincinnati Bengals have painful memories of playing the 49ers, having lost 12 of 16 games against San Francisco, including two Super Bowls. Joe Burrow will hope to get back on track in the latest meeting, however, having led the league with 14 picks to this point. Boomer Esiason, with 22 in 1990, was the only previous Bengals QB to lead the league outright in interceptions.

Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh praised Lamar Jackson for his response to the shock of throwing four interceptions against the Cleveland Browns.

Former MVP Jackson became the fourth quarterback in the past 25 seasons to throw four interceptions targeting a single player – in this case, Mark Andrews – in a game after Eli Manning-Hakeem Nicks, Luke McCown-Mike Thomas and Mark Sanchez-Braylon Edwards.

He was also sacked twice on Sunday as he finished with 20-of-32 passing for 165 yards.

However, Jackson's throw for Andrews' touchdown gave the Ravens a 13-3 advantage and they saw out a 16-10 victory to go top of the AFC standings.

The win also ended a run of 41 consecutive games in which a quarterback to throw four interceptions lost the game. The last man to win after such a performance was Andy Dalton for the Cincinnati Bengals against the Ravens in 2013.

The Ravens became the only team in the Super Bowl era to score fewer than 17 points, have fewer than 325 yards in total and throw at least four more interceptions than their opponents and still win the game.

Harbaugh was full of admiration for the way Jackson did not allow himself to be overawed by his mistakes.

"Nobody gets flustered, and it starts with Lamar," he said. "Lamar wants those plays back and he's a massive competitor. Yet he doesn't let it take control of him. He's able to push it aside and he's able to go play the next series and give you great football.

"It's really a rare trait. To me, that's one of the things that makes him the quarterback that he is."

Jackson himself said: "I feel like those drives, when the interceptions came, we could've done something on those drives. We could've put points on the board.

"I just told my team, 'That's me. I owe y'all.'

"I mean, it's one game that it happened. They just made great plays on those interceptions. It wasn't like I was throwing it right to them."

The 8-3 Ravens are at the Pittsburgh Steelers next Sunday.

 

The Baltimore Ravens dug deep to edge the Cleveland Browns 16-10, despite Lamar Jackson's woes in the NFL on Sunday.

Jackson threw a career-high four interceptions at home to the Browns in Baltimore, but the Ravens still prevailed.

Ravens quarterback Jackson threw four interceptions when targeting team-mate Mark Andrews in Week 12 – the former MVP becoming the fourth QB in the last 25 seasons to throw four INT targeting a single player in a game after Eli Manning-Hakeem Nicks, Luke McCown-Mike Thomas and Mark Sanchez-Braylon Edwards.

Jackson was 20-of-32 passing for 165 yards and a touchdown, while he was sacked twice by the visiting Browns.

That touchdown was a rare highlight on a rough night for Jackson, whose 13-yard throw to Andrews was enough to lift the Ravens after he scrambled back to around the 35-yard line before lofting a pass to the latter in the end zone.

The Jackson-Andrews completion gave the Ravens (8-3) a 13-3 lead, which they did not relinquish en route to claiming top spot in the AFC standings.

Cleveland quarterback Baker Mayfield combined with David Njoku for a 20-yard TD pass late in the third period, but it was not enough for the Browns (6-6).

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