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Browns coach Kitchens: Benching of WR Callaway only 1 game

Mon Nov 11 3:06pm ET
By TOM WITHERS
AP Sports Writer

Players: Rashard Higgins, Baker Mayfield, Antonio Callaway

In this Aug. 12, 2018, file photo, Cleveland Browns wide receiver Antonio Callaway catches a pass during NFL football training camp in Berea, Ohio. Browns coach Freddie Kitchens said benching Callaway is a one-game punishment. Callaway did not play in Sundays 19-16 win over the Buffalo Bills. He was a surprising addition to the inactives list after being included in the game plan. Kitchens has not divulged his reason for sitting Callaway, who was suspended four games earlier this season by the NFL for violating the leagues drug policy. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane, File)


CLEVELAND (AP) Browns coach Freddie Kitchens said wide receiver Antonio Callaway's benching was a one-game punishment.

Callaway didn't play in Sunday's 19-16 victory over the Buffalo Bills after being a surprising healthy scratch despite quarterback Baker Mayfield saying the receiver had been included in the game plan.

Kitchens did not divulge his reasons for sitting Callaway, who was suspended four games earlier this season by the NFL for violating the league's drug policy.

On a conference call Monday, Kitchens said he wasn't confident the 22-year-old Callaway would respond to the discipline.

''I don't know if he got the message or not,'' Kitchens said. ''But I'm not wavering.''

Kitchens said any conversations with Callaway will remain ''between Antonio and I'' but added the benching ''was only for yesterday.''

The benching gave more playing time to wide receiver Rashard Higgins, who caught a 7-yard touchdown pass with 1:44 left as the Browns snapped a four-game losing streak.

Kitchens was asked if he was disappointed or frustrated that he had to penalize Callaway, given his somewhat checkered history in college and during his short time as a pro. The Browns have been patient with him.

''I always want our players to make good choices,'' Kitchens said. ''I did what I felt like I needed to do. It's over.''

Callaway has eight catches for 89 yards in four games this season. As a rookie, the second-round pick in 2018 from Florida had 43 receptions for 586 yards and five touchdowns.

Player Notes
JuJu Smith-Schuster Dec 13 9:13am ET

Pittsburgh Steelers WR JuJu Smith-Schuster (knee) is unlikely to play in Week 15 after he aggravated his knee injury in practice Thursday, Dec. 12.

Fantasy Spin: It might be a little early for this, but aggravating the original injury that has kept him out so long could spell the end of his regular season. James Washington has been a borderline WR1 over the last five weeks, and he'll be a solid WR2 against the Buffalo Bills.

From TheHuddle

Da'Shawn Hand Dec 13 2:13am ET

Detroit Lions DE Da'Shawn Hand (ankle) was placed on the Reserve/Injured list Thursday, Dec. 12.

From TheHuddle

Miles Boykin Dec 13 1:30am ET

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Miles Boykin caught his only target for a five-yard touchdown in Thursday night's Week 15 win over the Jets. Boykin is just one of the several receivers that quarterbackLamar Jackson chooses to throw touchdowns to in any given week and can't be trusted as a fantasy playoff asset. Baltimore faces the Cleveland Browns in Week 16. Boykin caught all three of his targets for 32 yards and a touchdown in Week 4 against the Browns.

From RotoBaller

Willie Snead Dec 13 1:20am ET

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Willie Snead caught his only target for 15 yards in Week 15's win over the Jets. Snead's numbers are too erratic to be trusted as a starting option at this point. He has failed to put up more than 15 yards in a game in his last eight games played, although he did catch two balls for 61 yards and a touchdown against the Browns in Week 4.

From RotoBaller

Robby Anderson Dec 13 1:13am ET

New York Jets WR Robby Anderson had four catches for 66 yards in a Week 15 loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

Fantasy Spin: After consecutive weeks of 100-plus yards, Anderson played second fiddle to Jamison Crowder on Thursday night. Still, after a pretty disappointing season, Anderson has turned it up recently, averaging 5.5 receptions, 92.5 yards and 0.5 TDs per game. He may not offer the same level of consistency as Crowder, but Anderson has a higher upside. He's a possible WR3 in Week 16 against the Steelers.

From TheHuddle

Jamison Crowder Dec 13 1:03am ET

New York Jets WR Jamison Crowder had six receptions for 90 yards and two touchdowns against the Baltimore Ravens on Thursday, Dec. 12.

Fantasy Spin: Crowder continues to see heavy involvement in the passing game as he was targeted 11 times, nearly double that of Robby Anderson, and he caught a pair of TD passes to erase the stink of an inexplicable drop in the end zone. Crowder has been targeted seven or more times in six of the last seven games, and he's a much steadier play than Anderson or Demaryius Thomas (hamstring), who was down Thursday night with a strained hammy. Heading into Week 16, Crowder should have steady WR3 value.

From TheHuddle

Marquise Brown Dec 13 1:00am ET

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Marquise Brown caught all four of his targets for 45 yards and a 24-yard toe-tap touchdown in Thursday night's Week 15 win over the Jets. Brown was the second-highest targeted receiver in the game, trailing tight end Mark Andrews, who had seven. Hollywood plays a Cleveland Browns Defense in Week 16 that he caught four balls for 22 yards against in Week 4. Despite the good game on Thursday night, the rookie doesn't play many snaps and is a touchdown-dependent deep threat as a WR4 for fantasy owners.

From RotoBaller

Tyrell Williams Dec 13 1:00am ET

Oakland Raiders offensive coordinator Greg Olson said that wide receiver Tyrell Williams (foot) is still bothered by his plantar fasciitis. "Plantar fasciitis, its a pretty significant injury, but hes battling through it. Hes taking medication before every game trying to manage the pain," Olson said. The first-year Raider opened the year like gangbusters with five straight games finding the end zone. He predictably fell off from there and has just six catches for 62 scoreless yards the last three games against the Jets, Chiefs and Titans. He hasn't gone over 100 yards in a single game this year and also doesn't have more than seven targets in a game in 2019. Williams is a low-upside, low-volume, touchdown-dependent WR3/4 for fantasy owners. Throw in his lingering foot injury and you have a player to avoid.

From RotoBaller

Mark Andrews Dec 13 12:50am ET

Baltimore Ravens tight end Mark Andrews caught four of seven targets for 52 yards and a one-yard touchdown early in the second quarter in Thursday night's win over the Jets. Andrews' eighth touchdown broke the Ravens franchise record for touchdowns by a tight end in a season. He at least doubled all other receivers in targets except for receiver Marquise Brown. QuarterbackLamar Jackson's highly coveted tight end will have a rematch against the Browns in Week 16. Andrews caught four of eight targets for 31 yards and a touchdown in Week 4 against the Browns. He's a high-end TE1.

From RotoBaller

Le'Veon Bell Dec 13 12:43am ET

New York Jets RB Le'Veon Bell carried the ball 21 times for 87 yards against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 15. Bell also had two receptions for one yard.

Fantasy Spin: Yep, you read that headline correctly. Bell, who accounted for 1,946 total yards during his final season in Pittsburgh, hadn't topped 70 rushing yards in a game this year until Thursday night when he ran for 87 in a 21-point loss to the Ravens. Obviously some of Bell's early-season struggles can be traced to Sam Darnold's absence, but he simply hasn't been the same player for the Jets. He'll doubtless be motivated in Week 16 in his first meeting with the Steelers. That motivation runs both ways, though, and Bell could have some really boom-or-bust potential in that one.

From TheHuddle

Seth Roberts Dec 13 12:40am ET

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Seth Roberts led the team in receiving in Thursday night's win over the Jets. Roberts caught all three of his targets for a season-high 66 yards and a 33-yard touchdown pass just before the end of the third quarter. Roberts now has 19 receptions for 248 yards and two touchdowns in 2019. It's tricky to predict who quarterbackLamar Jackson will throw a touchdown pass to in any given week, making it too difficult to trust Roberts as a fantasy asset against the Browns in Week 16.

From RotoBaller

Ty Montgomery Dec 13 12:40am ET

New York Jets running back Ty Montgomery had two rushes for five yards while catching his only target for an additional five yards. Montgomery's biggest impact in the game came returning kicks as he took a backseat to Le'Veon Bell in the backfield. With Bell healthy and Bilal Powell (ankle) working his way back there's no reason to own Montgomery in fantasy leagues.

From RotoBaller

Sam Ficken Dec 13 12:30am ET

New York Jets kicker Sam Ficken missed his only field goal and made just one of two extra points in a loss to the Ravens Thursday. Ficken was the hero last Sunday with a walk-off field goal, but had a night to forget in Week 15. To be fair, the kick Ficken missed was a 49-yarder, but this is also the second week in a row he's missed an extra point. The career journeyman doesn't get enough scoring opportunities and will likely have to contend with the swirling MetLife Stadium December winds next week in a home date with the Steelers. Look elsewhere when filling the kicker spot.

From RotoBaller

New York Jets Dec 13 12:30am ET

The New York Jets Defense was unable to slow down MVP frontrunner Lamar Jackson and the high-flying Ravens offense Thursday night. Baltimore's offense couldn't have done much better playing against practice cones as Jackson had all day in the pocket to do whatever he wanted, which was usually throwing to wide-open receivers running free in the secondary. The Jets defense did put up a touchdown off of a blocked punt but could get nothing else going on a night to forget. The matchup gets a little better next week with a home date with the Steelers, fantasy managers playing for a championship, however, should still have better options than this unit.

From RotoBaller

Sam Darnold Dec 13 12:23am ET

New York Jets QB Sam Darnold completed 18 of his 32 passes for 218 yards, 2 TDs and an INT against the Baltimore Ravens on Thursday, Dec. 12. Darnold also ran for 11 yards.

Fantasy Spin: Darnold played reasonably well against a tough Ravens defense but came up short in a few spots, most notably throwing an interception late in the first half and turning the ball over on downs, that kept the Jets from adding on to their score. The USC product closes the season against a couple of tough defenses and should probably be benched until 2020 in fantasy leagues.

From TheHuddle

Mark Ingram Dec 13 12:20am ET

Baltimore Ravens running back Mark Ingram put up his fifth multiple touchdown performance of the season in Thursday Night's Week 15 win over the Jets. Ingram rushed for 76 yards on 13 carries and a rushing touchdown on the first drive of the game. He added a reception for a 10-yard stretch touchdown early in the fourth quarter. The veteran back will look to keep his momentum moving as he heads into a Week 16 matchup with the Cleveland Browns. Ingram rushed for 71 yards without a touchdown in Week 4 against the Browns.

From RotoBaller

Daniel Brown Dec 13 12:20am ET

New York Jets tight end Daniel Brown caught just one pass for four yards in a loss to the Ravens Thursday. Brown got just two targets while filling in for the injured Ryan Griffin (ankle) who was filling in for the injured Chris Herndon (hamstring). Brown is a serviceable blocker, so there's that, but the third-string tight end won't have any appeal in fantasy football.

From RotoBaller

Gus Edwards Dec 13 12:20am ET

Baltimore Ravens running back Gus Edwards rushed for 35 yards on five carries in Thursday Night's Week 15 win over the Jets. Edwards was able to break free for a 28-yard gain during garbage time, but he doesn't get enough touches to push him over the hill of being Ingram's handcuff. Leave him on your bench for now.

From RotoBaller

Paul Richardson Dec 13 12:10am ET

Washington Redskins wide receiver Paul Richardson (hamstring) has been limited the last two days in practice. Richardson has been out since Nov. 24 against the Lions, but it's looking like he might be active again in Week 15's divisional tilt against the Eagles. In the season opener against Philly, Richardson had four catches for 36 yards. On the season as a whole, he's predictably disappointed in this weak offense for 28 catches (42 targets), 245 yards and two touchdowns. Rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins isn't being asked to do much in a lost season, so it's hard to trust any receiver on this squad in fantasy outside of impressive rookie Terry McLaurin. If Richardson returns, avoid him in the fantasy semifinals.

From RotoBaller

Jamison Crowder Dec 13 12:10am ET

New York Jets wide receiver Jamison Crowder was one of few bright spots for the Jets Thursday, going for 90 yards and two touchdowns on a team-high 11 targets. Crowder got off to a hot start, making five catches for 72 yards and a touchdown in the first half. He cooled down after that but found the end zone on his only catch of the second half to score some garbage-time points for his fantasy owners. Crowder had been quiet three games in a row but had been getting plenty of targets so it was just a matter of time before he found his rhythm again. He'll be a WR3 in a tough matchup with the Steelers in Week 16.

From RotoBaller