3. Browns at Tampa Bay — Nov. 5, 1989
The third game on this list came against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at just over the halfway point of Metcalf’s rookie season. Coming into the contest, Metcalf had either run, thrown, or caught a touchdown in four straight games. Head coach Bud Carson decided to ride that momentum all game long in Tampa.
Metcalf carried the ball 17 times for 87 yards and a touchdown. The 42-yard touchdown came on a fake reverse where Metcalf scampered down the left sideline and then cut back across the middle of the field out running every Buccaneer defender easily. His ability to see the field and the confidence he had in his speed was a sight to behold.
Metcalf added an additional 52 yards and a touchdown as a receiver against a back-peddling Tampa Bay defense. His versatility allowed him to be a mismatch anytime a linebacker attempted to cover the rookie. As he was prone to do, Metcalf caught a ball going towards the sideline and then performed a jump cut that would make his father proud and took it to the house.
The do-it-all dynamo also added 94 yards on three kick returns against the Buccaneers. Metcalf ended up with 233 all-purpose yards on that November afternoon. If that isn’t enough, Joe Namath also gave Metcalf the Budweiser player of the game. That’s a pretty amazing day to be at only number three on this list.