AFC Notes: Browns, Jets, Patriots

     

Browns

Browns’ DL coach Chris Kiffin said that DE Adrian Clayborn has recovered from a hip injury that was limiting him the past few weeks. Clayborn recorded a sack in each of the first two games and could now see a lot of playing time with DE Myles Garrett on the COVID-19 list.

“You can say he is a little bit frustrated with his reps early in the season with some guys in front of him, trying to figure out his role, but we are all working through that together,” Kiffin said, via Scott Petrak of BrownsZone.com. He will have a much bigger role this week. I know he is excited about it. He mentioned that this morning. We are excited to see him, too. Adrian is the ultimate pro. From the time I got here, all he does is work. He stays prepared.”

Kiffin also had good things to say about second-year DE Porter Gustin, who is yet to record a sack this season but is constantly improving.

“He is a guy that can’t help but improve because he works so hard,” Kiffin said.Whether it is his off day, his nutrition, his film study, or his questioning of the scheme, it is always trying to get ahead with him. Excited to see him with his opportunity and what he is going to do. You know he is going to play hard and you know he is going to be around the ball, but now he will have more opportunities to rush the passer and be able to show what he is capable of doing.”

Browns’ DT Sheldon Richardson could also be a candidate to replace Garrett and says he has no problem doing so after sliding to the outside following Garrett’s suspension last season.

“I am perfectly fine with it,” Richardson said. Whatever the team needs me to do to win, I am pretty much going to do it. Whatever Coach asks me. I know the playbook pretty well inside and out. Just be ready for anything.”

Jets

  • Ralph Vacchiano says that while the Jets have many injuries as they prepare to take on the Chargers, there are more than 12 players under the age of 24 who are slated to play, nine of whom could possibly be starting.
  • Vacchiano adds that these young players could play a role in the future of the franchise, including WR Denzel Mims, RB La’Mical Perine, DT Quinnen Williams, CB Blessuan Austin, CB Bryce Hall, and S Ashtyn Davis.
  • Perine has been splitting time with veteran RB Frank Gore, which Vacchiano says needs to come to an end, as Perine could have a strong role with the team beyond this season.
  • As for Davis, Vacchiano alleges that he has not been the playmaker that the team hoped he would be and that he could see some time playing cornerback on Sunday against Los Angeles.
  • Jets promoted QB Mike White to their active roster. (NFLTR)
  • Jets placed CB Bless Austin on injured reserve. 
  • Jets activated OLB Frankie Luvu from injured reserve. 

Patriots

  • Mike Reiss expects the Patriots’ recently claimed DL Isaiah Mack to make his debut for the team on Sunday. 
  • Phil Perry of NBC Sports writes that the Patriots’ offensive line is the “driving force” behind their running game’s success, while RB Damien Harris has become the team’s “clear cut” first- and second-down back. 
  • Perry could see the Patriots starting a true “rebuilding year” next season, where New England leans on younger players, accumulates cap space, and acquires draft picks. 
  • Perry points out that it is still unclear who will be the Patriots’ quarterback in 2021 and whether CB Stephon Gilmore will continue playing for New England. 
  • Perry also notes that several players are set to be free-agents this offseason, including G Joe Thuney, DB Jason McCourty, RB James White, DT Lawrence Guy, C David Andrews, DE John Simon, DT Adam Butler, RB Rex Burkhead and DE Deatrich Wise
  • Should the Patriots commit to rebuilding this offseason, they are currently set to have over $60 million in available cap space for 2021. 
  • In the end, Perry believes the Patriots want to be “competitive each and every year” and expects them to spend on free-agents this offseason. 
  • Perry thinks that Patriots QB Cam Newton will move on to another team as a free agent this offseason, given veteran quarterbacks usually command decent contracts which could price him out of a deal with New England. 
  • Perry could see Newton making around Panthers QB Teddy Bridgewater‘s $21 million per year and he would not give New England any sort of discount. 
  • The Patriots have officially ruled out DT Adam Butler (shoulder) and RB JJ Taylor (undisclosed) from Week 11. (Jim McBride)
  • Patriots activated RB Sony Michel from injured reserve. (NFLTR)
  • Patriots waived OL Hjalte Froholdt
  • Patriots waived DE Derek Rivers. (NFLTR)
  • Patriots promoted WR Donte Moncrief to their active roster. (NFLTR)
  • Patriots signed DT Akeem Spence to their practice squad.

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