Skip to main content

Browns DC Gregg Williams Blames Denzel Ward's Injury on 'Stupid' Tackling Form

A wonky tackle during the Browns preseason game against the Eagles has left Ward with back spasms. 

Browns rookie cornerback Denzel Ward has back spasms, but no structural damage, after getting twisted up in a tackle on Eagles tight end Zach Ertz in a preseason contest last Thursday.

In a press conference on Sunday, Cleveland's defensive coordinator Gregg Williams attributed these spasms to the "stupid" way Ward tackles.

"I was glad to hear [it wasn't serious] and maybe he'll finally listen to me and stop doing those stupid things the way he's trying to tackle and tackle the way I tell him to tackle and he won't get hurt," Williams said. "I think this was a good enough shock that maybe he thinks that I might know what I'm talking about."

Ward, listed at 5'11" and 190 pounds, was hurt trying to stop 250-pound Ertz after a seven-yard catch in the first quarter of the game. He did not play the rest of the game after being taken off the field following the tackle. 

Williams said Ward should be fine for the rest of the season if he takes Williams's tackling tips and remains healthy. 

The No. 4 pick in the 2018 NFL draft, the rookie out of Ohio State has already missed time with a hip flexor injury in rookie minicamp earlier this summer and ankle issues in training camp. 

Cleveland faces Detroit on Thursday at 7:00 p.m. before kicking off its regular season on Sept. 9.