The Cleveland Browns have placed linebacker James-Michael Johnson and defensive back T.J. Ward on injured reserve with knee injuries.|||||||
Both Johnson, a rookie, and Ward were starters for a defense that allows 22.1 points per game. Ward had 68 tackles and one interception.
Ward has appealed a $25,000 fine for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Sunday at Dallas, and said the NFL's rules on vicious hits need to be changed.|||||||
Ward received a letter from the league on Wednesday informing him of the penalty for hitting Cowboys wide receiver Kevin Ogletree. Ward said replays conclusively show he did not touch any part of Ogletree's head. Ward said Ogletree was falling as he delivered his hit, which made it appear worse than it was. It's the second time Ward has been fined for a blow to the head.
The Browns have placed safety T.J. Ward on injured reserve with a sprained right foot.|||||||
Ward started eight games before getting hurt on Nov. 6 against Houston. The team had been hopeful he would be able to return, but Ward's foot never got well enough for him to be activated. The hard-hitting Ward, a second-round draft picks last season, made 38 tackles and forced one fumble. Browns coach Pat Shurmur was pleased with Ward's development and said he "was playing at a high level" prior to his injury. Shurmur said Ward will not need surgery "at this point."
Ward is not practicing again and will likely miss Sunday's game against St. Louis.|||||||
Ward sustained an unspecified foot injury last week in Houston and was placed in a cast. He has not been seen at the team's training facility all week. Usama Young will likely fill in for Ward. Young was practicing with the first-team defense on Friday after sitting out the past two days with a hip injury.
Ward's right foot remains immobilized inside a cast, leaving Cleveland's secondary with a very noticeable limp.|||||||
Ward missed his second day of practice Thursday with the injury he sustained last week in Houston, and coach Pat Shurmur said there's a "very good chance" the hard-hitting safety will not play Sunday against the St. Louis Rams. "I don't want to rule him out yet," Shurmur said.