CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Browns are still in the midst of training camp.
But their Oct. 31 matchup with the Cincinnati Bengals is already setting up to be one of the most highly anticipated games on their 2022 schedule.
Not only is there an -- admittedly increasingly slim -- chance that the contest will mark Deshaun Watson's first home game as a member of the Browns, but a rivalry has begun to develop between Cleveland's cornerbacks and Cincinnati's wide receivers. Appearing on 'The Pivot Podcast' earlier this week, Bengals wideout Ja'Marr Chase only added fuel to the fire, calling out Denzel Ward and Greg Newsome II.
Asked to name his "Mount Rushmore" of defensive backs, Chase -- the 2021 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year -- named Ward, who recorded a pick-6 in a Browns Week 9 win vs. the Bengals last season.
Chase, however, added: "Not just because Cleveland talks the most s--t. But just because Denzel Ward did his thing. Same for Greg Newsome -- I don't think he's elite -- but they definitely just all talk crazy. It ain't somebody we're circling."
Chase's teammate, Tyler Boyd interjected: "You've gotta titan up for it."
Chase replied: "It's ain't even that. It's just game time when we see them. It's on sight. It's just on sight when we see them. That's it."
As one might imagine, it didn't take long for both Ward and Newsome to respond. Taking to his Instagram story, Ward -- a two-time Pro Bowl selection -- reposted a video of Chase's comments, followed by a video of his pick-6 interception vs. Cincinnati last season.
Newsome, however, was more subtle, simply posting a string of emojis seemingly mocking Chase's comment.