Visiting the warm Florida beaches every year with the family is the best. Soaking in that bright Florida sunlight is awesome. We may not have those beaches here in Cleveland but this is your week to soak in that sunlight that is beaming from the Cleveland Browns recent win over the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Browns securing their first playoff berth in nearly two decades!
Cleveland Browns fans soak it in all week! You’ve earned it! Remember this moment in time! You know that this type of week doesn’t occur often and for you young Browns fans this is your first time experiencing a winning Browns team headed to the playoffs. The Browns passed their recent retest against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, beating them 24-22.
The Browns won the game like so many others this past season, with an array of great team play, led by the steady hand of Browns coach Kevin Stefanski (now coaching virtually due to a positive covid test). Browns running back Nick Chubb started the fun on Sunday with a dazzling display of running with a 48 yard TD scamper through the Steeler defenders. Later in the 2nd half Browns QB Baker Mayfield threw a hot TD pass to TE Austin Hooper. The Browns defense got into the action by then getting an interception that led to the Browns extending their lead when Mayfield shuttled a TD pass to receiver Jarvis Landry.
After the Steelers had clawed back into the game late, closing to 24-22, one final Browns offensive drive was enough to secure the victory. To some, the designed quarterback run by Mayfield that clinched it was a bit of a surprise. But like so many times this season, that’s part of what has led us to be so impressed by coach Stefanski’s play calls. Mayfield got impressive blocking on that final run by players like running back Kareem Hunt. These players and coaches trust one another and are playing for each other and we saw that on that last first down get.
The Browns getting to 11-5 on the season is so impressive for so many reasons. One could conclude that with the Steelers and the Baltimore Ravens both making the playoffs that the AFC North Division is the most competitive division in the NFL. You add-in that you had a new head coach with new players and having one of the youngest teams in the league. Throw in the pandemic, virtual practices, COVID protocols every week, injuries to key players throughout the season and yes, this was all earned.
I’ve mentioned in previous articles, my favorite memory of a Browns playoff appearance was that game against the New York Jets back in 1987. Part of the reason that many of us consider that such a fond memory was that it was the first time the Browns had won a playoff game in over 27 years.
Now, years later, after waiting 18 seasons to see the Browns in the playoffs, this is a time I hope you take every second to enjoy and soak in.
Being a Browns fan is a real investment like no other. What a Browns game does to you emotionally and physically is like nothing else in your life. Browns fans understand that investment and that’s why this week and beyond is such a reward and payoff that you’ll remember for the rest of your life.
Wear those brown, orange and white colors and team gear and be proud! Your Browns are in the playoffs! Ignore those salty Steeler fans and those spoiled Kansas City Chiefs and Green Bay Packers fans! This is your week and no one can take that from you. The Browns are your team and the Browns players and coaches know that too.
Did you know the Super Bowl is in Florida in a few weeks? Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could be there celebrating our Browns and soaking in that beautiful sunlight!?