The Cleveland Browns are already without Myles Garrett for Week 12, and they've lost another key defender for Sunday's meeting with the Jaguars.
Ward is coming off a game in which he recorded four passes defended, three tackles and an interception in a rain-soaked win over the Eagles. The third-year corner has quietly put together one of the better seasons in the NFL in 2020, leading the league in passes defended with 15. He also ranks fourth among all defenders (minimum 30 targets) in ballhawk rate (percentage of targets where the nearest defender made a play on the football, with a play being a pass defended or an interception) at 24.1% of his 58 targets in which he was the nearest defender, per Next Gen Stats.
Cleveland has played the entirety of 2020 without its No. 2 corner, Greedy Williams, who hasn't been able to suit up due to a nerve injury in his shoulder. Terrance Mitchell has played in place of Williams, doing an admirable job, while Ward has stepped up his performance to keep things under control in the Browns' secondary. It's likely Kevin Johnson will take Ward's place in the lineup as the Browns aim to stay in the hunt for the playoffs in the AFC.
In other Browns transaction news, Cleveland placed defensive lineman Joe Jackson on the reserve/COVID-19 list.
Other news we are keeping an eye on Tuesday:
- Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray was seen rehabbing on the side and not working during the open media portion of practice Tuesday. Wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins was not present.
- The Baltimore Ravens announced they will conduct all team activities virtually Tuesday. The team placed RB Mark Ingram, RB J.K. Dobbins and NT Brandon Williams on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Monday. The Ravens did not practice today, so this is a practice estimation. Defensive end Calais Campbell (calf) did not participate at practice. Tight end Mark Andrews (thigh) and outside linebackerMatt Judon (ankle) were limited.
- The Cincinnati Bengals are going through contact tracing after defensive line coach Nick Eason tested positive for COVID-19. Any close contacts would've occurred on Sunday, so no impact is expected on player availability for this week's game vs the New York Giants, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reports. The Bengals are also working out quarterbacks Kevin Hogan and Alex McGough.
- Houston Texans left tackle Laremy Tunsil was back with the team Tuesday after being inactive Sunday with a non-COVID illness.
- The New York Jets are signing running back Josh Adams to their active roster with rookie La'Mical Perine expected to miss a few weeks with a high-ankle sprain, NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reports. The team placed Perine and kicker Sam Ficken on injured reserve. New York also signed tight end Ross Travis.
- The Los Angeles Chargers plan to designate running back Austin Ekeler (hamstring) for return from injured reserve this week. It is not yet clear if Ekeler will be ready to play against the Buffalo Bills, Tom Pelissero reports.
- New England Patriots running back Rex Burkhead said in a tweet Tuesday that he is out for the remainder of the season. Burkhead suffered a knee injury in Sunday's loss to the Texans.
- Washington Football Team running back Antonio Gibson (ankle) and wide receiver Terry McLaurin (ankle) each returned to practice on Tuesday after sitting out Monday. Gibson was a full-go, while McLaurin was limited. Kicker Dustin Hopkins (right groin) did not practice for a second consecutive day.
- San Francisco 49ers cornerback K'Waun Williams has been suspended two games for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing drugs. In other 49ers transactional news, the team designated running backs Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson for return from the injured reserve list.
- The Los Angeles Rams claimed defensive end Derek Rivers off waivers from the Patriots.
- The Kansas City Chiefs placed wide receiver Byron Pringle on injured reserve.
- The New York Giants released wide receiver Corey Coleman from the practice squad.
- The Detroit Lions walkthrough practice on Tuesday saw wide Kenny Golladay (hip) and cornerback Jeff Okudah (shoulder) not participate, while quarterback Matthew Stafford (thumb) and running back D'Andre Swift (concussion) were limited.
- The Chicago Bears waived defensive lineman Anthony Rush.