Stock up, stock down: Browns see many rising stocks in Week 12

Browns, Nick Chubb. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
Browns, Nick Chubb. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /

The Cleveland Browns battled for nearly 70 minutes to secure a Week 12 victory over the Bucs. These players saw their stocks rise and fall.

Just when we all thought all hope was lost for the 2022 season, the Cleveland Browns found a way to suck us back in and reignite the hopeful flame of a potential playoff push. Cleveland knocked off Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday in overtime to improve to 4-7 on the season.

Normally, this would be just another win, but for the Browns, they are set to have Deshaun Watson under center for the first time in the regular season since the offseason blockbuster trade.

Watson was officially reinstated by the NFL, so now it’s time to rock. For as good as Jacoby Brissett has been this year, Watson will be even better in this offense.

In Week 12 against the Bucs, the Browns fought tooth and nail for the nearly 70 minutes of game time to come out with a much-needed victory. Here are the players who saw their stock go up and those who saw theirs drop.

Stock Up: Jacoby Brissett

In what will be his last start for the Browns (barring an injury), Jacoby Brissett went out with a bang. After a rare Amari Cooper dropped pass that seemed to derail any hopes of a Browns victory, Cleveland managed to get the ball back, trailing 17-10.

Brissett drove the team down the field and on a fourth-and-10, he fired a laser to David Njoku, who went up and hauled the ball in with one hand. Brissett went back to Cooper in overtime and the latter made up for his fourth-quarter drop to put his team in a position to win, which they did. Brissett went toe-to-toe with the GOAT and was awarded the game ball by Kevin Stefanski after the win.

Stock Down: Denzel Ward

Denzel Ward has not played up to the massive contract extension he received during the offseason and that continued on Sunday against the Bucs. On several occasions, Ward was burnt by a lot of the stellar Tampa Bay wide receivers. Ward has battled injuries (yet again) and Sunday was far from what Browns fans are accustomed to seeing from 21.

Stock Up: The “Run the ball” crowd

For the fourth time this season, Nick Chubb rushed the ball over 20 times and the Browns came away with a victory. Now, as has been discussed on this site countless times, it’s not that simple to just give Chubb 20 touches a game.

There are nuances and tendencies to each and every game. With that said, Chubb was on a mission on Sunday, rushing 26 times for 116 yards and the game-winning touchdown in overtime. He joined Jim Brown as the only players in franchise history to rush for over 1,000 yards in four consecutive seasons. Cleveland finished with 189 yards on the ground.

Stock Down: Cade York

For the fourth time this season, Cade York has left points on the field for the Browns. After nailing a 51-yard field goal, York shanked one from 36 yards out. It did look like it was partially blocked, but York has to make those kicks, especially as a fourth-round draft pick. There’s still plenty of time for him to figure it out, but he has been way too inconsistent this season.

Stock Up: The Browns Run Defense

After surrendering 366 rushing yards over the past two games, the rush defense of Cleveland came to play against the Bucs. The Browns allowed only 96 yards on the ground on Sunday and 57 of those came on the first drive of the game for Tampa Bay. There is still plenty of work to be done, but this was a massive step in the right direction. Shoutout to defensive coordinator Joe Woods, who has taken his fair share of criticism throughout the season.

Stock Up: Martin Emerson

When the Browns drafted Martin Emerson in the third round of this year’s draft, many were confused as the team has more holes to fill other than cornerback. So far, Emerson has proven why he was drafted so high and on Sunday, he was spectacular. He had four total tackles, three being solo, and also has four passes defended. That is no easy task against the likes of Chris Godwin, Mike Evans, and Julio Jones.