Cleveland Browns: Can You Say Playoffs?
The Cleveland Browns will be heading to the playoffs for the first time in 18 years. Cleveland was in a dog fight for four quarters, but the Browns were able to knock off the Pittsburgh Steelers by a final score of 24-22.
If they had lost this football game, Cleveland would have most likely been knocked out of the playoffs. Making the playoffs is a franchise changer and a potential culture changer for them in the long run.
Head Coach Kevin Stefanski deserves a ton of credit for changing this franchise around and also the culture as well. He made Baker Mayfield into a better quarterback.
Mayfield completed 17-of-27 passes for 196 yards and one touchdown. He also rushed for 44 yards on six carries.
Baker Mayfield is the heartbeat of the Cleveland Browns. He has played much better this season and it will be interesting to see if his fifth-year option will be picked up by the Cleveland Browns.
Nick Chubb rushed for 108 yards on 14 carries and a touchdown. He is one of the most underrated running backs in the NFL.
Kareem Hunt rushed for 37 yards on 10 carries. He is one of the best complementary running backs in the NFL.
Chubb and Hunt is the reason why the Cleveland Browns made it to the postseason. They are one of the best running back tandems in the entire NFL. Their running game was their identity all season long.
Rashard Higgins caught two passes for 55 yards receiving. He has been very good this season for the Cleveland Browns.
Jarvis Landry caught five passes for 51 yards receiving. He is one of the best possession wide receivers in the NFL.
Austin Hooper caught four passes for 37 yards receiving and a touchdown. He is was a very good offseason acquisition after playing with the Atlanta Falcons the last few seasons.
These three players were their best wide receivers/tight ends throughout the regular season.
They have not had wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. for a while.
Their defense still needs some help, but defensive end Myles Garrett could be a finalist for the Defensive Player of the Year Award for the Cleveland Browns.
The culture is going to be a key thing moving forward. The Cleveland Browns will be the sixth seed in the AFC. They are going to be facing the number three seed the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Wild Card Round.
These two teams split the first two meetings, despite Pittsburgh resting some key players in this football game.
The Browns want to make a deep playoff run and make a message to the rest of the NFL about being in the playoffs and being here for a long time.
Cleveland is happy that they are in the playoffs but they just don’t want to be content about it at all. The Cleveland Browns have worked hard to get here.
What did you think of the Cleveland Browns making the playoffs for the first time since the 2002 season? Leave a comment below.
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Follow Glenn Kaplan on Twitter @glennkaplan13.