Baker Mayfield will start for the Browns and then stop — maybe for a while.
The top overall pick — and Cleveland’s quarterback of the future — will make his first NFL start and play as much as a half on Thursday night when the Browns visit the Detroit Lions in an exhibition that will feature backups as well as third- and fourth-stringers fighting for precious roster spots before this weekend’s cuts.
Mayfield’s job as the Browns’ No. 2 QB behind Tyrod Taylor is secure, but the Heisman Trophy winner is looking forward to a chance to make another positive impression.
“I’m very ready,” Mayfield said Tuesday. “It’s another opportunity for me. I’ve been saying it over and over again, I need to take advantage of my opportunities and this is a great one to come out and show what I can do from the get-go, set the tone not just for the offense but for the whole team.”
Eagles top AP poll
The Philadelphia Eagles will start their quest to repeat as Super Bowl champions as the top team in the first AP Pro 32 poll of the 2018 season.
The Eagles received six of the 12 first-place votes and 367 points in balloting by media members who regularly cover the NFL.
The Patriots, who have been to eight Super Bowls in the Tom Brady and Bill Belichick era, were a close second — just as they were in the loss to the Eagles in Minneapolis. The Patriots received three first-place votes and 366 points.
The Minnesota Vikings, who lost to the Eagles in the NFC championship game, are No. 3. The Vikings added quarterback Michgan State alum Kirk Cousins in the offseason to a team with high expectations. The Detroit Lions are No. 19.
OBJ on ‘legendary’ quest
Odell Beckham Jr. isn’t satisfied being the NFL’s highest-paid receiver.
The three-time Pro Bowler for the New York Giants wants much more than the $95 million deal the team agreed to pay him Monday. The 25-year-old wants to be one of the best to play in the NFL.
“Like I said, before I was even in the NFL, I wanted to be legendary,” Beckham said Tuesday. “Yeah, the money is great, you can take care of your family, you can take care of kids one day that you’ll possibly have. But my goal was always to be in the Hall of Fame, to win trophies, to be able to leave a legacy that will be remembered way past any money that you make.”
Beckham said the broken left ankle that sidelined him most of last season forced him to struggle to get back on the field and helped him mature after many slipups off the field.
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones wants to eliminate two preseason games and add two more for each team to the regular season schedule. He has pitched an 18-game regular season before, to no avail.