Ward is signing a five-year, $100.5 million extension with the Browns, Scott Petrak of the Elyria Chronicle-Telegram reports. The deal reportedly includes $71.25 million guaranteed, a new league record for a cornerback. Ward was the fourth overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, and while he's missed multiple games every season, he's also recorded multiple interceptions and double-digit pass defenses in each campaign. He turns 25 in late April and has a good chance to be one of the league's top cornerbacks over the course of his second contract.
Ward was activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list Thursday, Aaron Wilson of Sportstalk 790 Houston reports. The cornerback missed the Browns' season finale in Week 18 after being placed on the COVID list Saturday. Ward finished the 2021 season with 43 tackles, 10 pass deflections and three interceptions over a career-high 15 games.
The Browns placed Ward (groin/undisclosed) on the reserve/COVID-19 list Saturday. Ward had been questionable for Sunday's Week 18 matchup against the Bengals due to a groin injury, but he should be unavailable after landing on the COVID-19 list. Assuming he's inactive Sunday, the 24-year-old will finish the 2021 campaign with 43 tackles (34 solo), 0.5 sacks, three interceptions, a touchdown and 10 pass defenses.
Ward (groin) was listed as a non-participant on Wednesday's injury report, Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal reports. Ward sustained a groin injury during Monday's loss to Pittsburgh and is still bothered by the issue ahead of Week 18. If he hopes to play Sunday against the Bengals, the 24-year-old will presumably need to practice in some capacity Thursday or Friday.
Ward is questionable to return to Monday's game against Pittsburgh due to a groin injury, Dan Labbe of The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports. It would be a big blow for the Browns if Ward is unable to come back into the game, as Greedy Williams also went down with an injury in the first half and is questionable to return.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|2||09/18||New York Jets||10|
|5||10/09||Los Angeles Chargers||24|
|6||10/16||New England Patriots||1|
|12||11/27||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||27|
|16||12/24||New Orleans Saints||19|