Can Cleveland Browns keep their momentum against Washington?
The Cleveland Browns came out winners in primetime as Baker Mayfield and company showed up to play. Mayfield looked like the 2018 version of himself in primetime as he fired rockets with accuracy and confidence.
Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt combined for 210 yards on the ground, and both lines dominated their side of the ball. Thursday night was what Cleveland fans everywhere were waiting for from Kevin Stefanski, his staff, and the players.
So what now? Now it is time for this team to carry that momentum into the Week 3 battle with Washington.
Keep that swagger, Baker
As stated in the opening, not only did Mayfield’s throwing look like the record-setting quarterback from 2018, but you could feel that fire and swagger from the third-year quarterback. Both Troy Aikman and Joe Buck mentioned it early in the broadcast as you could feel that cocky, confident swagger leaping off the television screen. As the game went on, you saw the fist bumps, the screams, and the head butts with teammates after every big play. That Baker Mayfield wins games and makes plays. Can Mayfield carry that over to Sunday at 1 pm est?
That’s the question, and for the Browns to keep the winning going, the answer has to be yes. They need their franchise quarterback to be the fire for this team. When he’s walking onto that field as he owns it, players respond at a level we have not seen in Cleveland. Receivers look like they are three steps ahead of corners. Linemen are firing off their blocks, finding someone to hit, and 45-yard bombs for touchdowns rain down on the opponent.
Like him or not, “feeling dangerous” Baker Mayfield is what the Cleveland Browns must have to win.
Keep the best duo in the NFL pounding
Nobody in the NFL has what the Browns have in Chubb and Hunt. A lot of NFL teams would like to have just one of them. The luxury that the Browns possess when they can hit you for three quarters with Chubb and compound that with a fourth-quarter dose of Hunt is unfair. Stefanski must continue to use his weapons through the game to keep teams in check and control the clock.
Last week Stefanski used the threat of that backfield early to hit some big plays through the air. Maybe this week, you open it up, slamming those two backs at the Washington edge rushers, tiring them out as the game drags on, then make them pay with some more play-action. Whatever the gameplan, keep that aggressive attack on display, and we can all enjoy a victory Monday.
Keep the pressure coming
The Browns defensive front has brought it in both games this young season led by superstar edge rusher Myles Garrett. After making his presence known last week with a strip-sack that ended in a Nick Chubb touchdown, and dealing 61 passing attempts, Garrett and the rest of the line needed 10 days rest. Washington has allowed seven sacks this season. Only the Texans and Eagles have allowed more.
This plays right into what the front office and coaching staff built this front to do. Get in the backfield and make plays. We need to see Sheldon Richardson blowing up guards like they aren’t there. Porter Gustin locking down the run game and smashing quarterbacks like he did Joe Burrow and Larry Ogunjobi disrupting everything like he has the first two weeks.
Keep building the culture
For everyone that wants a player to walk in and fix the Browns, it ain’t happening. The only thing that builds culture is everyone on the same page, WINNING. That is it. It does not matter who is at quarterback, head coach, wide receiver, etc. The only thing that builds confidence and strengthens this team’s fortitude is ending as many games as they can with a W. The Browns need to step out on First Energy field with the same fire they did Thursday on Sunday and keep the momentum up with another great performance ending in a win.
Keep that up, and other teams will be using the Cleveland Browns blueprint moving forward.