Cleveland Browns studs and duds from 2019 preseason opener
Stud: Mack Wilson
Entering Thursday night’s game, rookie linebacker Mack Wilson was able to string together multiple good practices after making several plays, especially when he was in pass coverage. And on Thursday night, he continued his momentum from practice.
Wilson showed his playmaking abilities while in pass coverage, intercepting two passes, including returning one 40 yards for a touchdown.
Wilson’s first interception was made after the linebacker made a good initial drop into coverage, which helped him gain position on the receiver. Haskins made a poor decision and threw the ball right to Wilson, but the rookie was able to turn and make the leaping grab, then running it back for a touchdown.
His second interception was even more impressive as he was playing underneath coverage. He once again made a leaping grab, reaching out with full extension to make the interception.
Wilson was also all over the field, generating pressure when he blitzed, played solid punt coverage, and also made a couple of tackles. Wilson finished the game with three tackles, two passes defensed, and two interceptions.
After his strong week of practice was capped off with an excellent NFL debut, Wilson may start pushing for reps with the first-team defense. If he can become more consistent against the run, it may be hard for the Browns to keep him off the field.