BEREA — Brady Quinn looked uncomfortable Wednesday as he stood in front of his locker. He had good reason.
The Notre Dame graduate bet former NFL quarterback and USC alum Rodney Peete that the Fighting Irish would beat the Trojans last week. Final score: USC 38, Notre Dame 0.
So Quinn donned a No. 10 Trojans jersey Wednesday to pay up.
“We met last year and became pretty close,” Quinn said of Peete. “It was a friendly bet.”
Despite the one-win Irish being a huge underdog, Quinn didn’t get any points.
“I’ve got faith in my guys,” he said.
The faith wasn’t rewarded, and Quinn paid up. He slipped the cardinal and gold jersey over layers of undershirts.
“I made sure it’s not touching any part of my body,” he said. “The trash can is next.”
Quinn wasn’t joking. When the television cameras had been turned off and the bet paid, Quinn took off the jersey and threw it in the nearest garbage can.
When veteran linebacker and USC alum Willie McGinest heard, he approached Quinn and gave him grief.
St. Louis tight end Randy McMichael guaranteed the 0-7 Rams would beat the Browns on Sunday.
“We have nothing else to say — we are going to win the football game,” he said.
Browns center Hank Fraley and tight end Kellen Winslow didn’t have a problem with McMichael’s comments.
“It’s his way of psyching up his team,” Fraley said. “Everybody feels they’re gonna win every week. It doesn’t make me want to play any harder.”
“There’s nothing wrong with it,” Winslow said. “It’s just confidence. That’s the way it should be. But I’ve seen a lot of them backfire.”
Running back Steven Jackson was informed of McMichael’s guarantee in a conference call with Cleveland media.
“I back it,” Jackson said. “I’ll guarantee it with him.”
Coach Romeo Crennel said offensive lineman LeCharles Bentley isn’t “totally ready to be out there yet.”
“I’m talking about all phases of the game,” Crennel said. “There are some areas he would be able to go and get some things done. But totally, I think he needs a little more time.”
Bentley’s on the physically unable to perform list and must return to practice by Nov. 6. The team would then have another three weeks to activate him.
“He’s continuing to work and progress,” Crennel said. “He’s doing everything he can to try to get on the football field. He really wants to play for the Browns. He wants to walk through the tunnel, be introduced and then help us win games.”
Running back Jamal Lewis was limited in practice but looked good in the half-hour open to the media.
“If he’s ready, we’ll play him,” Crennel said.
Tight end/special teamer Darnell Dinkins (hand) was limited, and receiver Joe Jurevicius (knee) was a full participant.
• Winslow said the bye week helped his partially dislocated shoulder.
“I feel fresh. I’m ready to go,” he said.
• For the Rams, center Brett Rhomberg (ankle) didn’t practice and receiver Torry Holt (knee) was limited. Quarterback Marc Bulger (ribs) and Jackson (groin) practiced fully.
New kid in town
Safety Nick Sorensen (6-foot-3, 205 pounds) was signed Wednesday to take Gary Baxter’s roster spot. In six years he’s played 75 games with St. Louis and Jacksonville. He’s a special teamer who’s never started a game.
“I don’t think I’ve played too much defense in my career so far,” he said.
Sorensen, 29, said he was training in Virginia after being cut by Jacksonville during training camp. He said he had a tryout with the Browns a month ago.
“I’m just happy to be able to play again,” he said. “I wasn’t sure I was going to get another opportunity.”
He has 81 career special teams tackles and led the Rams with 24 in 2002 and the Jaguars with 19 in 2003.
Contact Scott Petrak at 329-7135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.