Cleveland Browns

What They’re Saying: The Seattle Seahawks are Russell Wilson’s team

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NBC Sports Northwest

What They’re Saying: The Seattle Seahawks are Russell Wilson’s team

It’s a new week, but the chatter around magician, I mean Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson, is still loud and clear.

Week 5 brought another brilliant performance from the Seahawks franchise quarterback, who looks worth every penny of the $140 million contract extension he signed with the Seahawks this offseason.

Sideline meetings held by Wilson, K.J. Wright and Bobby Wagner turned the tides on Sunday, allowing the Seahawks to come back from a 14-point deficit in the second quarter to beat the Browns 32-28 at FirstEnergy Stadium. 

Up next, Seattle (5-1) welcomes the NFC North leading Baltimore Ravens (4-2) in a clash at CenturyLink Field.

Before we preview this week’s matchup, let’s take a look at What They’re Saying about the 5-1 Seahawks in Week 7:

Robert Mays of The Ringer shares his thoughts on Wilson, who he calls the MVP favorite.

“Even as Wilson continued to show that he belonged at the table with the league’s best quarterbacks, his early-career reputation followed him. But now, with the final piece of the Legion of Boom gone and a lackluster running game that can take this team only so far, Seattle’s fortunes don’t hinge on its past identities. The Seahawks are now unmistakably Russell Wilson’s team, and for the first time, people are understanding how great that team can be.”

Mike Florio of NBC Sports’ Pro Football Talk also raved about Wilson’s nearly flawless game. He may have thrown the word Super Bowl in there too. 

“This year, he’s arguably playing better than any other quarterback, and if he keeps it up he very well could become the MVP. More importantly the Seahawks could end up forcing the road to Miami through Seattle, which will make a return to the Super Bowl more likely.”

NBC Sports’ Peter King called the Seahawks “a formidable team” and noted the return of defensive end Jarran Reed.

“This is a formidable team, and they’re never out of it with Russell Wilson in charge. And now the Seahawks get a valuable and rested piece back for their defensive front—Jarran Reed, suspended for the season’s first six games—just at the right time. The Ravens come to Seattle next Sunday as the most dangerous rushing team in football."

James Brady of SBNation discussed the NFC West and how the 49ers are now the team Seattle needs to beat in the division.

“The NFC West is still going to be a fight — the Seahawks are 5-1 and the Rams can’t be counted out at 3-3 — but the 49ers now should be favored in that fight. The Seahawks had their run of being the most-feared team in the division when the Legion of Boom was running the show. The Rams took over that mantle when McVay came in. Now it’s the 49ers’ turn to the bullies in the division.”

Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer says Wilson would get his MVP vote if voting took place today. 

“As it stands now, Seahawks QB Russell Wilson would probably get the edge for me over Watson for MVP. And one reason why is that 20-6 deficit in Cleveland today felt like nothing for an offense that doesn’t really have another skill player who’ll keep the defensive coordinator up on Saturday night. So much of it is Wilson himself, and how he rubs off on his teammates.”

And last, but not least. We've got to talk about the Seahawks wide receivers' celebratory dance to NSYNC. It dominated Sunday and is still the talk around the NFL two days later. 

Andrew Joseph of For the Win

"The Seahawks are now the favorite team for every NFL fan. I’m sorry. Those are the rules."

The ’90s boy band’s Twitter page even gave the team a score on their performance after the Seahawks’ official page tweeted out the video asking, “How’d we do, @NSYNC?”

“The judges scores… 10 – 10 – 10 – 10 – 10,” NSYNC’s Twitter responded, a perfect score all around.

Social media reacts as Seattle Seahawks edge Cleveland Browns in nail biter

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Social media reacts as Seattle Seahawks edge Cleveland Browns in nail biter

There was the Seattle Seahawks wide receivers celebratory dance of NSYNC’s “Bye Bye Bye” in the end zone, Tedric Thompson’s brilliant interception of Baker Mayfield before halftime and a Seahawks game wouldn’t be complete without some Russell Wilson magic.

Coming off one of their most poignant wins of the Seahawks season, Seattle (4-1) had an opportunity to build of its recent success in a matchup with the lowly Cleveland Browns (2-3) in Week 6.

While the Seahawks got off to a slow start at FirstEnergy Stadium, they took a 25-20 lead in the second half and never looked back.

Here’s a look at what fans and media are saying about the Seahawks 31-28 victory over the Browns. You can also read Seahawks Insider Joe Fann's three takeaways here

In the first quarter, Russell Wilson continued his MVP like play when he scrambled for 16 yards to the end zone for Seattle’s first score. Yes, he can do it all by himself. 

Trailing by 8, Wilson found wideout Jaron Brown in the corner of the end zone for 17-yard TD pass. The Seahawks wide receiver celebrated Brown’s touchdown accordingly...with an *NSYNC dance in the endzone of course.

Seattle missed the two-point conversion, and trailed by 20-18 at halftime. But Wilson wasn’t done with Brown in the second half. DangeRuss found his target of the day for a six-yard strike to take the lead for the first time. He liked it so much, he did it twice.


Next up, the Seahawks will head home to CenturyLink Field in Week 7 to host the Baltimore Ravens. Kickoff for next Sunday's matchup is set for 1:25 p.m. 

HIGHLIGHTS: Seahawks in action against the Browns

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USA Today

HIGHLIGHTS: Seahawks in action against the Browns

It's NFL Sunday and Russell Wilson and the Seahawks are in Cleveland taking on Baker Mayfield and the Browns. For Cleveland, it's a chance to get back to .500 and keep playoff hopes alive. For Seattle, it's a chance to keep pace with the 4-0 49ers and remain in the top tier of the NFC. 

Cleveland opened the game with a kick return touchdown, but the Seahawks answered and this game was off and running. 

Seattle trailed 20-18 at halftime.

Here are some of the best highlights of the game so far (check back often, as this article will be updated throughout the game):

DK STRONG

DK Metcalf is a monster. At 6'4", 229lbs, he is a hulk of a man. With that combination of size, power, and speed, he can be tough to bring down. He showed off all those skills in one play against the Browns.

CAN YOUR QUARTERBACK DO THAT?

2nd and 14 from the 16-yard-line. What do you do? Let Dangeruss take care of business.

NOT UP IN HERE

Who needs a good punt returner when you have a good punt blocker?

END THE HALF STRONG

The Browns had a chance to go up big with the first half winding to an end, but the Seahawks intercepted Baker Mayfield, then drove the length of the field to score with 22 seconds left in the second quarter. 

BYE, BYE, BYE

The Seahawks receivers are "NSYNC"

PUNCH IT OUT

Ziggy Ansah ain't playing around.

BROWN DOES IT AGAIN

A touchdown so nice, he decided to do it twice.

CC: TOUCHDOWN

Chris Carson put the Seahawks ahead late in the 4th quarter

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Be sure to follow Joe Fan on twitter, for updates and analysis throughout the game from Cleveland. 

Then come back here to NBC Sports Northwest after the game for analysis, blogs, videos, and player interviews.

More Seahawks: 

Three Keys to a Seahawks victory in Cleveland
Week 6 preview: 5 Seahawks players to watch vs. Browns
Analysis: Seahawks two-minute defense desperately needs to improve
Seahawks likely without LT Duane Brown vs. Myles Garrett, Browns
Seahawks OL Jamarco Jones set to make first-career start vs. Browns

Baker Mayfield woke up feeling dangerous

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Baker Mayfield woke up feeling dangerous

In the words of Baker Mayfield, he woke up feeling dangerous today. Today's victim: the Cincinnati Bengals. 

Mayfield and the visiting Cleveland Browns (4-6-1) took care of business today on the road against the Bengals (5-6) 35-20 snapping a 25-game road losing streak and doing so in demanding fashion.

Mayfield recorded 19-for-26 for 258 yards four touchdowns and zero interceptions. He woke up feeling dangerous indeed.

This play pretty much sums up the day for the Browns:

Not only was this game important for the Browns' organization after letting go head coach Hue Jackson, but after an interception from Browns' DB Damarious Randall, Randall found Jackson (now with the Bengals coaching staff) on the Bengals sideline and handed him the ball:

Next up the Browns travel south to face the Houston Texans (7-3) in Houston, Texas.

 

Raiders vs Browns pits Blazers teammates against each other

Raiders vs Browns pits Blazers teammates against each other

Damian Lillard is a Raiders fan. CJ McCollum is a Browns fan. The Raiders play the Browns this Sunday. So these two must have a friendly wager on this one, right? Wrong. 

Lillard tweeted out yesterday that the Browns were going down. This prompted local radio personality Brandon Sprague to ask if the teammates had a bet on the game. McCollum responded, saying Lillard wasn't having any of that action.

When a fan asked Dame what he had to say about it, he said "absolutely nothin." 

Maybe there is a bet we don't know about, or maybe Lillard is just focused on training camp and the team's first preseason game on Saturday. However, considering the freshly inked Raiders logo Lillard has tattooed on his forearm, we think he's definitely paying attention to this matchup.

If they aren't throwing down money for a bet, Lillard and McCollum will most certainly to battling for those locker room bragging rights. 

 

Dear Kickers: You have one job!

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USATI

Dear Kickers: You have one job!

Just like in any workplace, if you don’t do your job, you get fired. Whether all of the blame falls on you or not becomes irrelevant. If you do your job poorly, chances are, you will be looking for a new one.

That was the case for Daniel Carlson and Zane Gonzalez this past week. The two kickers were cut from their respective teams after failing to do their job: kick the ball between the uprights.

While these two are the only players – so far – to actually lose their duties, missing field goals and extra point attempts seem to be a trend in the first two weeks of the NFL season. I’m extremely perplexed as to how this could possibly be an ongoing issue. As a kicker, you have one job. In my opinion, long field goals are excusable but missing anything closer than 40 yards and missing extra points are both inexcusable. You’re a professional athlete, it is expected of you to make those kicks.

While I do agree that there are a multitude of other plays that can add up in a game that could cause a team to lose, I also believe that what separates a college kicker from a professional kicker is the ability to perform under the pressure of game-changing situations. There were 19 missed kicks on Sunday including 12 field goals and seven extra points. Several of those kicks were potential game-winners.

In case you were living under a rock this past weekend, let me catch you up on the missed kicks I am alluding to:

  • Zane Gonzalez was the kicker for the Cleveland Browns. Please keep in mind that the Browns have not won a game in 21 months. This past weekend, Gonzalez missed two of his four field goal attempts and both of his extra point attempts. The Browns lost to the Saints 21-18.
  • The Minnesota Vikings tied the Green Bay Packers on Sunday. While that is not a loss, they still had chances to win. Vikings kicker, Daniel Carlson, missed three (THREE!) field goal attempts, two of which were in overtime. This is the same Carlson that the Vikings traded up to snag in the fifth round of the 2018 NFL Draft. He is no longer with the team.
  • Steelers’ kicker, Chris Boswell, missed a field goal and an extra point in their 42-37 loss to the Chiefs.
  • The Raiders lost by one point in their game and their kicker, Mike Nugent, had an extra point blocked.
  • Texans kicker, Ka’imi Fairbairn, missed a field goal and the Texans lost to the Titans by 3.

These are just a handful of the misses across the league. Interestingly enough, the Los Angeles Rams had their punter, Johnny Hekker, take over kicking duties due to an injured Greg Zuerlein. The Oregon State University alum had never kicked a field goal in his career and he nailed it. Hekker also added an extra point for the Rams. If the punter can come in and make a kick, a professional kicker should be able to successfully put the pigskin through the uprights simply because they have one job.

 

 

 

CJ McCollum: A day in the life of a Browns fan

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USA Today

CJ McCollum: A day in the life of a Browns fan

Life is hard when you are a fan of the Cleveland Browns. The team has won just one game since the start of the 2016 season, and started this season in the most Browns way possible - A tie. Trail Blazers star shooting guard CJ McCollum is an Ohio native and he is always very vocal on Twitter about his love for the Browns. The highs are few, the lows are many, but McCollum never wavers. On Sunday the Browns let a victory slip through their fingers, and McCollum's heartbreak was present on social media.

Of course, there are some more tweets about the game but they aren't safe for work. You can go see them for yourself on McCollum's Twitter page. 

McCollum's tough weekend turned into a tough Monday when it was announced the Browns would be trading star wide receiver Josh Gordon to the Patriots of all teams.

Here's to hoping the Browns beat the Jets this Sunday. 

 

31 Greatest NCAAF Players in PNW history: No.28 - Stephen Paea

31 Greatest NCAAF Players in PNW history: No.28 - Stephen Paea

All month we are counting down the Top 31 players from NW colleges to play college football. Make sure you check out the Giveaway Page for your chance to enter and win prizes! 

 

Who would have ever thought that a young man born in Auckland, New Zealand would one day end up in Corvallis, Oregon and become one of the greatest defensive players to ever wear the Orange and Black? That’s exactly what Stephen Paea did.

Paea landed in Corvallis in 2008 and made an instant impact. Paea recorded at least 40 tackles in each of his three seasons and ended his career at OSU with 14.0 sacks, 29.5 tackles for loss, and nine forced fumbles. He was also named an All-American in 2010 and was named Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year that same season.

Paea was drafted by the Chicago Bears in the second round of the 2011 NFL Draft and would play for the Bears, Redskins, Browns, and Cowboys before announcing his retirement in 2017.

Paea ended his NFL career with 129 total tackles (76 solo) and 14.0 sacks.

NFL Training Camps: A look at the young Beavers

NFL Training Camps: A look at the young Beavers

With training camp in full swing I figure there was no better time to take a look around the league and see how some former Oregon State Beavers are performing.

For this particular piece we will look at some on the younger Beavers. There is no need to talk about players like Brandin Cooks, Derek Anderson, or Brandon Browner, as we all know how well those guys are doing. Instead we will look at some young bucks; players who are making noise, turning heads, and battling for a position on the depth chart. Let’s take a look.

Sean Mannion –

The second year quarterback for the Los Angeles Rams is a lock to be at least third on the depth chart, and depending on how Case Keenum and Jarod Goff perform, could realistically slide into the No.2 spot. Goff is the starter of the future for the Rams, so the real question is who is the true backup; Keenum or Mannion?

Mannion continues to improve, and has garnered some high praise from teammates early in camp.

Via Jack Wang of the Los Angeles Times:

“Everything’s slower to him now,” said receiver Bradley Marquez, who caught two of Mannion’s six career completions. “He’s able to know the plays, so in the huddle, he commands that respect when he comes in there. He’s coming in with confidence, telling everybody what they’re gonna do.”

…“From last year to right now,” said punter Johnny Hekker, “he’s leaps and bounds ahead of where he was.”

While it may not be this season, Mannion may end up being the Rams backup of the future. Mannion played in just one game for the Rams last season, going 6-7 for 31-yards. In four years at OSU, Mannion amassed 13,600 yards passing and 83 touchdowns.

Connor Hamlett -

Hamlett has yet to play a snap in the NFL since leaving OSU in 2014, but that could change this year. Hamlett has been a standout at Browns camp, and is the favorite to be named the backup to Pro Bowler Gary Barnidge.

Via Patrick Maks of ClevelandBrowns.com:

“He’s done great. That guy is tall,” head coach Hue Jackson said, laughing. “He’s got long arms. You can kind of throw it up there and he goes and gets it. He’s done a great job. I’ve been really pleased with him.

“One thing about him, the guy is really accountable. He’s always here. He’s always out here competing. I’m very, very impressed with the things he has done.”

Tight Ends coach Greg Seamon had the following to say with regard to the position battle at backup TE:

“Connor is a long, tall, spidery guy with excellent hands. He’s very smart,” Seamon said.

“We’ll see how it plays out. Right now, those jobs are available. What we’re attempting to do in practice is give everybody enough repetitions at all the various spots so that when we get to the games, they can go in and show what they can do.”

Hamlett played in 34 games at OSU, amassing 1,109 yards receiving and 10 touchdowns.          

Isaac Seumalo –

The third round pick of the Philadelphia Eagles is playing catch up at Eagles Camp. Due to Oregon State’s quarter system, and ridiculous NCAA rules, Seumalo missed Philadelphia’s OTAs this spring. Now that he is with the team, he is a little behind the eight ball. However, with a world of potential in front of him, the hill should be easy to climb Seumalo. When healthy he showed Pac-12 foes why he was a top-round pick, and if not for those lingering injuries he may have been drafted even higher. But Seumalo is ready to battle.

Via Les Bowen of Philly.com:

"It's a tough drill. The NFL's no joke," Seumalo said. "You gotta bring it and be near-perfect every time you go, if you wanna win, and even then, it's hard. I just look for improvement."

             Seumalo said he knows the only way to get better is to be "really objective and coachable."

…"I expect that out of myself, to compete, but most importantly, get better every day," Seumalo said. "I don't make the depth chart. The best five will play. If that's me, I'm excited. If not, I'm still excited."

Seumalo is currently listed as the back up to nine-year veteran Allen Barbre at Left Guard, and with the Eagles projected to be one of the worst teams in the NFL this season, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Seumalo get some playing time this season.           

Steven Nelson –

Nelson was a stud at Oregon State, grabbing eight interceptions and making 122 tackles in just two seasons in Corvallis. His ability to shut down some of the best receivers in the Pac-12 was a big reason the Chiefs picked him up in the third round of the 2015 NFL Draft.

The Chiefs have a young, talented defensive backfield making snaps hard to come by for Nelson in 2015. However, he still managed to make an impact, playing in 12 games for KC. 

Nelson really started to find his groove late in the season, and if that upward trend continues he will easily crack the lineup for the Chiefs.

Via of J Kissel of Chiefs.com:

Throughout offseason workouts this year, Nelson has been one of the standouts for the Chiefs defense, making plays all over the field on both the outside as well as inside at the nickel cornerback position.

“He really started picking up towards the end of last year,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid recently said of Nelson. “I thought he kind of took off the last quarter of the season. We were excited to see if he’d continue to grow at that inside position.”

…Nelson has spent a lot of time this offseason at that nickel position—a spot he hopes to earn and one that he hopes to show Reid and the other coaches he can handle.

“He has made some plays in the inside with the first group there,” Reid said of Nelson’s offseason playmaking thus far.

The nickel package is a great spot for Nelson to fall in. It fits his skill set well, and will continue to give him an opportunity to grow. The position for those young DBs in Kansas City will be a very interesting one to watch.

D.J. Alexander –

Not a lot of news coming out of Kansas City with regard to the linebacker, as the Chiefs have one of the strongest linebacker corps in the NFL. Justin Houston, Derrick Johnson, Josh Mauga, and Tamba Hill make up a formidable first unit, while Dee Ford, Ramik Wilson, Frank Zombo, and Alexander anchor the second unit. 

The Chiefs’ second unit is strong, stronger than what some teams trot out on their first team. For Alexander, cracking the starting lineup will be very hard to do. But there is a tremendous amount of potential with Alexander, and 12-year veteran Derrick Johnson sees it.

Via BJ Kissel of Chiefs.com:

            After practice on Monday, Johnson gave a little breakdown of each of the young guys:

“Well, ‘Little DJ” (D.J Alexander) is probably our fastest linebacker,” Johnson explained. “I hate to say that because I've always been the fastest, but his speed to the ball is unbelievable. He's still young and he's still learning, but his potential is through the roof.

Not only has Johnson seen Alexander’s potential, Alexander has leaned on the veteran’s leadership as he continues to grow:

For Alexander, the leadership of not just Johnson and Mauga, but from all of the guys in that defensive room, is special.

“They're all like big brothers,” Alexander explained. “They want to see us do better and they're pushing us. They’re staying on us and challenging us and we look up to them because we want to be like they are.”

Alexander looks to be a large part of the Chiefs defense this coming season, and if he isn’t able to crack the starting lineup I would not be surprised to see teams contact KC trying to trade for the young linebacker.

Obum Gwacham –

The former wide receiver turned defensive end looks like he may have found a home with the New Orleans Saints. Gwacham was drafted by the Seattle Seahawks in 2015, but was let go in September of that year. A day after being waived by Seattle, he was claimed by the Saints. Now in his second season with the Saints, Gwacham has found a sense of comfort as he enters his first training camp with the team.

Via Amos Morale III of NOLA.com:

"It's nice that I'm able to be here with this team during camp because I was with a different team last year," he said. "It's nice that I can grow with everyone and we can go through the struggles of camp days together."

Gwacham has been working at camp with Saints defensive line coach Bill Johnson and pass rush specialist Brian Young to improve his technique. Specifically, he worked on his zero-step technique which he says involves initiating contact with the offensive lineman or tight end first.  

"It allows you to push-pull him and it makes it much easier to control them," he said. "So that's one of the biggest things that I worked on and I've definitely seen it pay off."

Saints head coach Sean Payton said the key with Gwacham's development will be how he handles playing against the run. 

            "That'll be a challenge," he said. "That'll be a little more new."

            Overall, Gwacham thinks training camp has gone well so far.

Gwacham had eight tackles and a forced fumble in nine games last season, and is currently listed as the backup defensive end behind Kasim Edebali. He is in a great spot in New Orleans, as they don’t need him to be a starter yet, and a year as a true No.2 will really help his development.

Terron Ward –

There hasn’t been a lot of noise with regards to Ward coming out of Falcons training camp. Ward his missed a few days of practice recently due a lingering ankle injury, but he still could be a factor for Atlanta this year. Ward was used sparingly last season, carrying the ball 29 times for 95-yards, but could see a little more action as he has the inside track to be the teams No.3 RB.  If his touches in the offense don’t see an uptick, that doesn’t mean he won’t see more playing time. With the recent release of kick returner Devin Hester, the special teams spot is up for grabs. Ward returned kicks at OSU, and worked on kick returns during offseason workouts.

Whether at running back or on special teams, Ward should have a chance to help Falcons, if he can stay healthy that is.