The Cleveland Browns played the majority of Sunday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs without the services of left tackle Jedrick Wills.
Wills injured his ankle on a touchdown run by Jarvis Landry and was carted to the locker room before the half, playing just 20 snaps. He would not return to the game, with veteran Chris Hubbard coming in to replace him.
The question now is if Baker Mayfield’s blindside protector will be able to play against the Texans in Week 2. It sounds like it’s a possibility, with head coach Kevin Stefanski saying x-rays were negative and calling Wills “day-to-day” with the ankle ailment.
“We’ll see how he progresses throughout the week,” Stefanski told reporters on Monday.
If Wills is unable to go, it would again be Hubbard stepping into the starting lineup for the Browns.
Wills on Social Media: ‘Be Back Soon’
Wills was vocal on social media following the injury, including a post to his Instagram story that read, “appreciate the love, be back soon”.
Wills was the Browns top pick in the 2020 draft and played well last year protecting Baker Mayfield’s blindside, moving from right to left tackle. He graded out as 61.5 per Pro Football Focus, excelling in pass blocking. Wills delivered a harsh self-criticism of his game during camp.
“Looking at it a year ago, I thought I was trash compared to this year watching film,” Wills said. “It’s a brand new game when you turn on the film this year.”
Mayfield laughed when he heard Wills called himself “trash” backing his left tackle.
“I think a lot of that was him getting used to just foot-work wise. He was a right tackle his whole life, and switching over to the left side and getting used to the fundamentals, that is tricky for him,” Mayfield said. “I would not say that he played as poorly as he described. He is definitely a lot more comfortable and not having to learn a new system and terminology-wise of him knowing all those calls and being comfortable with it where he can just improve on the physical stuff, you see a big difference. He is ready to go.”
Wills has said he takes pride in being on the field and playing through the injuries, so expect him to battle to be on the field in Week 2.
“An offensive lineman, no matter what happens, we can play with three or four dislocated fingers and still have the same job,” Wills said. “So just trying to name ourselves as the toughest people on the field and put everybody on our backs.”
Browns Not Being ‘Conservative’ With Odell Beckham
Another player the Browns hope to have on the field in Week 2 against the Texans is Odell Beckham Jr., who was a late scratch against the Chiefs. Beckham is returning from a torn ACL he suffered in October of last year. He had surgery on November 10 and has been relentless in his rehab.
“I wouldn’t call it a conservative approach,” Stefanski said. “We’re just trying to be appropriate with all of this. Ultimately, he’s coming off of a major surgery and we’re going to work through it day by day and when he’s ready to play, he’ll play.”
The Browns opened as 12.5-point favorites for their home opener against the Texans.