Home / Sports / Browns vs. Bengals notes: Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt duo flash Cleveland’s head, Joe Burrow impressive

Browns vs. Bengals notes: Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt duo flash Cleveland’s head, Joe Burrow impressive

It turned out to be a very exciting Thursday Night Football game between two teams who weren’t exactly known for their crimes. Not bad for an early September matchup between the Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals, two of the NFL’s laughs for decades. Baker Mayfield v Joe Burrow has the potential to be a prime time must for the next decade, especially if Cleveland and Cincinnati continue to perform well in the years to come.

The grades are high and both the Browns and Bengals got high marks for a game that made the NFL proud on their 100th birthday. Enjoy, consume and criticize. You know where to find me.

Browns: A.


7;s hard to give less to the Browns. Four days after Cleveland was embarrassed by Baltimore, Kevin Stefanski’s offense looked just as we imagined it the summer. The Browns have two running backs who are just as good as the others and who feed each other. Nick Chubb ran 100 yards and two touchdowns while Kareem Hunt rushed 8.6 yards per carry and had a roaring TD and got his own TD. Cleveland didn’t even have 200 yards in a game last season, but they topped that figure in their second game of 2020.

Stefanski eventually went for what Baker Mayfield’s Bread and Butter was in Oklahoma by highlighting the game-action pass, and the 2018 # 1 overall was close to perfect. Outside of an interception of a pass he didn’t have to make, Mayfield threw 219 yards and two touchdowns while completing nearly 70% of his passes. Thursday was the best Mayfield has seen in a long time – arguably since December of his rookie season (2018).

The Browns Pass Rush took advantage of one of the worst offensive lines in football, forcing Joe Burrow to throw 61 passes – something unknown to a rookie QB in his second career game (more on that in a moment). Cleveland ended up with seven quarterback hits, with Myles Garrett’s forced fumble being the groundbreaking game the Browns needed after failing to touchdown from the 1-yard line in four consecutive games. The Browns also kept the Bengals below 300 net passing yards and extended the longest streak in the NFL to 23 games. Keeping the series intact was even more impressive as the Browns defenses had attacked the Bengals one-dimensionally. It was a big win for Cleveland in a game the Browns needed.

Bengals: B-

The Bengals offensive line is terrible. Her run defense is still the worst in the league a year after it actually hit the worst in the league. This would be one of the worst teams in the league – and probably still is – but they have a very bright future with Joe Burrow and that was made clear on Thursday night.

It’s scary that Burrow threw 61 passes in just his second career start, especially since he is only the third rookie QB to ever throw more than 60 passes in a game. However, Burrow is only the 10th quarterback in NFL history to make more than 60 pass attempts and have no interceptions. He’s the first rookie to do this feat. Keep in mind that Burrow has been under constant pressure from the Browns defensive line all night as Cincinnati has one of the worst offensive lines in football (especially on the right side of the line). This makes what Burrow achieved all the more impressive.

The Bengals get this grade because of Burrow. 88 offensive games – 64 designed passes – Burrow was still able to complete 60.7% of his passes and throw three touchdowns. Cincinnati has a franchise quarterback and a heavy cast of passport catchers to work with, even if there isn’t much else around him. Bengal fans have good times ahead of them.

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