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Browns face COVID-19 outbreak ahead of Raiders’ Week 15 game

Raiders will face Nick Mullens again Saturday

NFL: Oakland Raiders at San Francisco 49ers
Nick Mullens beat Raiders in 2018
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE: Now, the Raiders will face quarterback Nick Mullens on Saturday with both Baker Mayfield and Case Keenum on the COVID-19 list. Mullens was just promoted from the practice squad. The Browns are absolutely depleted. Mullens’ career highlight was a blow-out win over the Raiders in prime time three years ago. He gets another chance in primetime Saturday.

The Cleveland Browns were already dealing with a major coronavirus problem when they awakened on Wednesday morning. Then, they realized they have a full-blown crisis on their hands.

After placing eight players on the NFL’s reserve/COVID-19 list on Tuesday, they added six more (five on the 53-man roster), including quarterback Baker Mayfield.

Of course, the Browns host the Las Vegas Raiders in three days. Kickoff is at 1:30 p.m. PT on Saturday, Dec. 18. They have several key players on the COVID-19 list in addition to Mayfield including: wide receiver Jarvis Landry, tight end Austin Hooper, guard Wyatt Teller, safety John Johnson, cornerback Troy Hill and defensive coordinator Malik McDowell. In total, Cleveland has 18 players on the COVID-19 list.

Also, Cleveland head coach Kevin Stefanski was placed on the COVID-19 list on Wednesday alongside his starting quarterback ... this is a full-blown crisis for Cleveland. If Stefanski and all of the players on the list can’t receive two negative tests 24 hours apart before Saturday morning (which is unlikely), they will not be able to play that afternoon.

Backup quarterback Case Keenum will play for Mayfield if Baker is unavailable. Multiple reports stated that the NFL has no current plans of moving or cancelling the game.

The news of Cleveland’s outbreak has majorly affected odds set by the DraftKings Sportsbook. The Raiders are now a 3.5-point favorite and the over/under line has dipped to 37 points. The betting line opened at Browns -6 and the over/under was 43.5