Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said this past week that Sunday’s game against the Cleveland Browns wasn’t a revenge game, but it certainly looked like it was. Eleven months after Browns defensive end Myles Garrett ripped Mason Rudolph’s helmet off his head and hit him with it, the Steelers absolutely flattened the Browns 38-7.
Steelers entirely dominant
The Steelers looked dominant almost immediately. They didn’t waste a single down and consistently pushed forward in their first possession, even though it ended in a field goal.
It was also apparent that the Browns (and quarterback Baker Mayfield) didn’t have their best stuff. On third-and-4 during their first possession, Mayfield threw a pick-six directly to Minkah Fitzpatrick.
Four minutes into the second quarter, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger heaved the ball 36 yards down the field, where it was brought in by — you guessed it — rookie wide receiver Chase Claypool, who broke out with seven catches and four touchdowns in Week 5.
James Conner capped the drive with a touchdown.
That series was followed by Mayfield throwing another interception, which led to another Steelers touchdown.
It wasn’t until the final four minutes of the first half that the Browns finally made a big play. Mayfield had a 36-yard pass to Austin Hooper, and ultimately hit Rashard Higgins for a touchdown to avoid leaving the first half with a goose egg on the scoreboard.
Case Keenum takes over in 4th quarter
It didn’t get any better in the second half. When the Browns went for it on fourth-and-1 in the third quarter, they ran into a solid mass of Steelers knocking them back.
On the flip side, when the Steelers went for it on fourth-and-1 just a few minutes later, they converted and scored a touchdown a few plays later. The Steelers scored again on their next possession to go up 38-7 and effectively end the game.
In the final seconds of the third quarter, Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski took Mayfield out of the game and replaced him with Case Keenum. It was unclear whether Mayfield was benched or if he was just being preserved because the Steelers had such a huge lead, but Mayfield’s stats weren’t great regardless. He was 10-for-18 with 119 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.
The Browns went into Week 6 with a 4-1 record, but they got absolutely pasted Sunday. Pittsburgh, meanwhile, improved to 5-0 and finally beat a team with a winning record after going unbeaten against the New York Giants, Denver Broncos, Houston Texans and Philadelphia Eagles.
Tomlin may not have wanted the Steelers to get revenge, but he couldn’t stop them. A good football team is just good. Revenge is just the cherry on top.
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