Cleveland Browns: 5 offensive players that shined in big win against Bucs

Browns, David Njoku. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
Browns, David Njoku. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /

The Cleveland Browns rose to the occasion when they surprised the Tampa Bay Buccaneers late and won thanks to several players that shined down the stretch

The Cleveland Browns mounted a late-game comeback against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday that resulted in a big win. The Browns are now 4-7 and still have a glimmer of hope of reaching the postseason.

One primary reason for that optimism has to do with the fact that Deshaun Watson will debut as the starting quarterback next Sunday. While we anticipates his return to the field, this past game had several players step up in big moments that led to the win. Let’s look back and identify five players that stood out on the offensive side of the ball.

5. Jacoby Brissett, QB

In what should be his final game as the Cleveland starter, Jacoby Brissett went out in style. He helped manage this offense well over the past 11 games and despite the poor record, he routinely gave the team a chance each week.

In this game, he continued that pattern. The offense moved the ball well at the start of the game. And in this last battle, the former NC State quarterback was able to help guide the team to very late scoring drives in the fourth quarter and then in overtime.

Statistically, he finished 23-37 for 210 yards and a touchdown. For the season, he’s gone for 2,608 yards and 12 touchdowns.

He made several big plays in this game including a huge 46-yard pass play to wide receiver Amari Cooper that helped put the team in position for the overtime victory.

4. Amari Cooper, WR

Amari Cooper was silenced most of the game but not all of it.

After showing how dominant he can be over the past month, it was a bit of a surprise to see him not be a bigger part of this game early. That narrative changed though in the late stages.

During the last drive of the fourth quarter, Cooper was able to get a couple of big pass catches that ultimately resulted in setting the team up for the win.

Cooper has had a solid season to date. He’s now collected 57 passes for 792 yards and seven touchdowns. He’s really stepped up even more in his receptions as he’s caught 15 passes for 207 yards over the past two weeks.

The most impressive moment for the wide receiver in the game against Tampa Bay was when he initially failed by dropping a huge pass on a fourth down attempt at the midway point of the last quarter. Despite the setback, he made up for it moments later by grabbing a 46-yard pass where he first made a great move to escape the defender, followed up by the catch, and then scampered down to the goal line.

3. David Njoku, TE

David Njoku has made some great catches over his career. He wasn’t able to contribute much to this game, but it was the catch he made with 32 seconds left that will be remembered for a long time.

It was the final play by the team on a desperation fourth and 10 call and it ended up being successful. If Njoku hadn’t jumped to the sky the ball might not have been caught. Even more impressive was the fact that he grabbed the ball with only his left hand.

2. Nick Chubb, RB

The Browns running back finally got back to his old ways in this battle Sunday after being shut down the previous week. Nick Chubb finished with 116 yards on 26 carries and the game-winning touchdown.

It was a very good sign for the back as he had several big chunk plays that helped power the offense forward. He’s the first Cleveland running back to clear 1,000 yards rushing in four straight seasons since legendary Jim Brown.

He’s also continuing to climb that Cleveland all-time rushing leaders’ ladder. He’s currently in fourth place with 5,855 yards. Mike Pruitt is in third place with 6,540 yards. That’s a gap of only 685 yards with six games to be played this season.

If Chubb can get one more big outburst of yardage like a 150-yard game or more, then moving into third place could happen before the final snap in the season.

1. Anthony Schwartz, WR

Let’s finish our recognitions with a shout-out to Anthony Schwartz. He scored a touchdown on a nifty 31-yard touchdown on a reverse play on the Browns opening drive.

He was able to maximize his talents on the play call. While the team has tried using him in this type of play in the past, the former college sprinter was able to deliver this time.

Schwartz also caught a pass for 17 yards. After being put on the Cleveland bench for several games, the re-emergence of him to the team and the fan base has raised a few eyebrows and hopefully a stay that will last longer moving forward.