Browns week six preview


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Only in a year as wild as 2020 could the Browns sustain a winning record. The elusive “p” word has even creeped into the vernacular of many: playoffs. Despite decades of struggles, the Browns are heading into week six with a 4-1 record after a commanding victory against the Indianapolis Colts.
The Colts struggled to contain the Browns across the board. Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield threw four touchdowns and posted a modest 85.5 QBR (quarterback Rating). Rashard Higgins and Kareem Hunt secured the TDs from Mayfield.

Additionally, the Browns defense was able to provide a much needed scoring boost. In the third quarter, Browns defensive back Ronnie Harrison Jr. intercepted Phillip Rivers’s pass and scored a 47 yard touchdown. Further, the Browns defense secured a safety in the fourth quarter.
The Browns face a difficult matchup this week as they square off against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Rothlisberger has thrown 10 touchdown passes and only one interception in the first weeks of the season. Running backs James Conner and Benny Snell Jr. also began the season with impressive rushing totals. However, Pittsburgh’s strength resides with its defensive front. Headlined by T.J. Watt, Bud Dupree, Cameron Heyward and Stephon Tuitt, the Steelers’s fierce front will inevitably create problems for the electric Browns offense.

This week will be a test for both teams. Here are the keys for the Browns to emerge victorious:


  • Baker Mayfield must stay patient

The Browns offense will face their most difficult challenge thus far with the Steelers defense. Baker Mayfield will inevitably be pressured on every snap. Mayfield must stay patient in the pocket and trust his offensive line. To maintain the current Browns passing attack, Mayfield cannot make poor decisions with the ball that could lead to interceptions. The Steelers defense is unforgiving.

  • Defensive breakout game

Despite the Browns strong defensive performance last week, the Colts often handed the Browns opportunities on a silver platter. The disciplined Steelers offense will not make the same mistakes. Browns defensive backs must force Rothlisberger to make tough decisions and be risky with the ball. Additionally, Myles Garrett must put pressure on the Steelers quarterback every play (hopefully without striking them with a helmet this year).

  • Offensive line must show out

The Steelers defense objectively ranks in the top three in the league. Earlier this season, they held pro-bowler Saquon Barkley to under ten rushing yards and have combined for nearly the most tackles for loss thus far. The Browns must at the very least slow down the defensive attack to allow incremental gains. Only through tiring the Steelers defense can the Browns succeed.

My Take: Reality Check in the CLE

As a Cleveland native, this season seems all to be too good to be true. Though the Browns are a team capable of competing with the Pittsburgh Steelers, they are due for a reality check. In previous weeks, Mayfield has been careless with the ball and no team has capitalized on these mistakes. This week the Steelers will beat the Browns, but the Browns will emerge from the loss a better team. Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski has consistently shown that he can motivate a locker room. A loss this week could be the spark that ignites a better reboot in Cleveland.