Browns announce choice between injured Baker Mayfield, Case Keenum vs. Broncos
Baker Mayfield wants to play in Week 7 against the Denver Broncos at home despite an injured shoulder, but he’s been ultimately ruled out by his team for that game. In lieu of Mayfield, the Cleveland Browns will have veteran quarterback Case Keenum taking over starting duties, according to the team.
QB Case Keenum to start versus Broncos.
— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) October 20, 2021
This will mark Keenum’s first start since 2019 when he was still with the Washington Football Team (then the Washington Redskins). With the Redskins, Keenum made eight starts out of 10 appearances and passed for 1,707 yards and 11 touchdowns against five interceptions.
Mayfield had earlier said that whether he plays Thursday against the Broncos or not will be up to him, but that doesn’t seem to be the case after the Browns made the decision to give Keenum the nod to start.
#Browns Baker Mayfield said he expects to play Thursday night: "It's my decision. I get to say whether I play or not and that's just how it is."
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) October 19, 2021
But it’s also possible that Mayfield thought that starting against what looks like a beatable Denver team at home while potentially aggravating his shoulder injury and risking long-term injury is not worth it. He can take another full week of rest and hope that he’ll be ready to go in Week 8 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Apart from Mayfield, the Browns will also be without running backs Kareem Hunt and Nick Chubb
Keenum has appeared in two games this season, with just a completed pass for six yards on three attempts all recorded during Week 6’s 37-14 loss to the Arizona Cardinals.