The Browns will be a hobbled bunch on Thursday night against the Broncos, with quarterback Baker Mayfield looking to play through a torn labrum and running back Nick Chubb set to miss his second consecutive game with a calf injury.
Mayfield spoke to the media on Tuesday and said he’s planning to play through the pain, despite aggravating the injury on Sunday. Mayfield was seen after the game with his arm in a sling, leaving Browns fans concerned about his status. He confirmed to reporters that his left labrum is now fully torn, after being just partially torn entering the game. Mayfield landed awkwardly on his left side after a hit and exited the game for four plays to be examined before returning for the rest of the game.
“Only I know how my body feels. It’s my decision,” Mayfield said. “I get to say whether I play or not, and that’s how it is.”
The Browns (3-3) were bounced by the Cardinals (6-0) 37-14, with Mayfield completing 19-of-28 passes for 234 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. It was a disappointing performance, with the 26-year-old missing Chubb, his top running back. Kareem Hunt didn’t make it through unscathed, suffering a calf injury in the fourth quarter. Hunt was placed on injured reserve, meaning that head coach Kevin Stefanski will turn to D’Ernest Johnson and Demetric Felton to share the load in the backfield. The injuries, however, don’t stop there.
Receiver Jarvis Landry has been on injured reserve with a knee injury but was designated to return last week. Landry sat out but has a chance to play on Thursday. Fellow receiever Odell Beckham Jr. injured his shoulder on Sunday and was not a full participant in practice on Tuesday. He will likely be a game time decision going into Thursday’s game.
It’s a doomsday scenario for the Browns, who haven’t played to their potential this season. They will be desperate for a win on Thursday to keep pace in the tight AFC North, where all four teams are at .500 or better.