Cleveland Browns: 5 Studs and duds in playoff win

Browns, Baker Mayfield. Mandatory Credit: Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports
Browns, Baker Mayfield. Mandatory Credit: Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports /
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Cleveland Browns
Jan 10, 2021; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (19) tries to get away from Cleveland Browns cornerback M.J. Stewart (36) in the third quarter of an AFC Wild Card playoff game at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

Stud: M.J. Stewart, Cornerback

For those keeping score at home, M.J. Stewart was awful on Monday Night Football and made a few bonehead plays that really cost the Browns. At that moment I was ready for a change, but boy did he redeem himself in this one.

Stewart saw the field a lot as the nickel back as the Steelers were throwing early and often with the Browns jumping ahead early. In the Joe Woods defense, the nickel position is so important, and having a backup in that position could lead to trouble like it did vs. Baltimore just a few weeks ago.

Stewart was a menace on the field Sunday night. Normally when a secondary player leads the team in tackles it is a bad thing, but not tonight. Stewart had 10 solo tackles, and most of those came within five yards of the line of scrimmage.

While his highlight of the night was one of the four interceptions on the night, perhaps the biggest play was his tackle for loss on a famous Steelers quick screen to a wide receiver. So many times fans have seen those quick passes go for 10 plus yards, but not tonight.

While it will be a welcomed sight for Ward and Johnson to return next week, Stewart was instrumental in the Brown’s first playoff win since 1994.