Baker Mayfield shines in the record books in Browns win over Giants
Only the greatest kicker in NFL history can beat Primetime Baker. For the third time this season, Baker Mayfield made the national spotlight en route to the Browns' first 10-win season since 2007. With that, Mayfield made history himself.
After last week's devastating defeat against the Ravens on Monday night, Mayfield threw two touchdowns and nearly 300 yards with a 20-6 win over the New York Giants. Mayfield has completed 66 of 102, 859 yards, six touchdowns, and two interceptions in total in prime time games this season. He's 2-1 if he plays at 8pm. Slot and a Justin Tucker field goal from 3-0.
After a light-out performance in the first half against the Giants, Mayfield accompanied Aaron Rodgers as the only NFL quarterback who had a pass rating of more than 135.0 at least four times. At the end of the game, Mayfield (27 of 32) also wrote Brown's story with the third highest game completion percentage. He now has the second and third sharpest performances in the team record books.
"It's going back to trusting the guys around me, trusting the guys over, stepping through the progress and delivering the ball," Mayfield told reporters after the game. “Let them do the pieces. Our protection continues to be great and these guys keep playing for us. That's why your trust is so high. I don't have to do anything else. These guys do their job. "
One of Mayfield's five imperfections resulted from a pass that was tipped on the fourth point of the inaugural drive on the scrimmage border. On the next run, Mayfield orchestrated the shortest scoring run of the night (13 games, 75 yards, 6:41). Later in the game, Mayfield twice directed scoring drives from 95 yards and threw only two incompleteness between the two series.
“I thought Baker was excellent tonight. He was selected, ”said Brown coach Kevin Stefanski. "That's what I expect from him. That's what he expects from himself. That's how he practices. I really thought he was hot."
When the Giants came into play on Sunday evening, they had the seventh pass defense in the last three games. Two of their opponents were Kyler Murray and Russell Wilson. Mayfield dismantled a James Bradberry-free secondary school by completing passes for eight different players.
"We're not trying to force the ball on anyone," Mayfield said. “We trust our progress and play calls. We take what's there and keep the chains moving. "
Stefanski planned an offense that allowed Mayfield to often find multiple open targets. For the past six weeks, Mayfield announced that he and Stefanski have worked together to achieve consistent success on offense.
"We're really on the same page right now," Mayfield told NBC's Michelle Tafoya after the game. “After the goodbye week we sat down and had good conversations. Open-minded communication. Between Kevin calling it and everyone who knows what their job is, we just try to get out there and make it to every game. "
After the week 9 break, Mayfield made 10 touchdowns at 1,568 yards and completed 67% of his passes. Most importantly, Mayfield only threw an interception. It's a drastic improvement over throwing 28 picks from last season through 2020 bye week.
By the time Stefanski got into the week 15 matchup, he added more fuel to the fire by making Mayfield game captain. Stefanski picked Mayfield in his first game against former head coach Freddie Kitchens, but downplayed the narrative to focus on the overall goal that was to come out and win.
"Every week I think about what the message will be for this week," said Stefanski. “Baker is a fighter. That was required in this game tonight. "
Mayfield echoed Stefanski's thoughts after the Browns win, which secured a win over the NFC East teams.
"It's a big thing for me. We are through this track where we keep building and improving," he said. "It's great for him to do that in a primetime game."
The Giants win 4 Browns fast food stalls
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