Cleveland – When the Cleveland Browns collapsed in a 31-30 loss to the New York Jets on Sunday, it felt as though The best quarterback Jacoby Brissett was lost.
This thinking can be hard to admit. But it was almost universal, at least to those outside the drama-filled frontiers of the Browns’ cross-country mortgage campus.
We were wrong.
Thursday’s 29-17 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers at FirstEnergy proved that we significantly underestimated Brissett.
Brissett was signed by the Browns on March 25, and was considered a placeholder for Deshaun Watson, the game’s manager who scored 14-23 as a starter. after, after Watson’s 11-game suspension in the league was announced, and many believed Brown would have done better with Baker Mayfield, and was traded with the Carolina Panthers. Some miss Jimmy Garoppolo, who was San Francisco The 49ers wisely decided to keep him.
We were wrong in every respect.
In the past two games against the Jets and Steelers, Brissett has shown what he can do when surrounded by some of the best offensive linemen and appearances in the league. His passing rate in these two games is 106.2, and his completion percentage is 74.1. In three matches, these numbers were 94.3 and 66.3. His career best success rate was 88.0 with the Indianapolis Colts in 2019. His best success rate was 62.7 in 2021 in Miami.
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Since his emotional and exciting debut for the Browns in the 26-24 victory in Carolina, Brissett has pressed the ball and played with his feet.
He showed just how much that move meant to him on Thursday, when he shot 6 yards in the third and 1 from Pittsburgh 14 with 11:32 left in the fourth and responded with a Tiger Woods-worthy grip pump. His gain kept him alive by 11 games, and an 80-yard touchdown that put Brown at 23-14.
Brissett’s honesty in discussing his emotions about that play gave him a glimpse into why his castmates are so devoted to him.
“I was thinking about it on the sidelines because I’ve never been able to do that in a match,” Brissett said. “Every time I see a quarterback do that in a game, I’m like, ‘Dang, this is so sick. I want to do it once.
“I told myself if I sneak in, I do it. I almost passed out. Game flow, just getting excited, letting my feelings show and not holding things, just being there.”
The Browns’ October 2 game in Atlanta concluded the confidence-building portion of the schedule before they were thrown into the fire against the Los Angeles Chargers on October 9. Prior to Watson’s scheduled return to play on December 4 in Houston, she also competes for the Patriots, Ravens, Bengals, Dolphins, Bells and Buccaneers.
Brisset can return to Earth against teams like the Chargers, Bills, and Bucs. But the chemistry he’s building with four-time Pro Bowler Amari Cooper, who became the first Browns receiver to score consecutive 100-yard games in nine years, and David Njoku’s court finish Preaching good news. A record below 0.500 with Brisset on his head no longer seemed inevitable.
Cooper sees something in Brissett, New England drafted him in the third round in 2016, though Brissett is with his fourth NFL team, three in the past three years.
“I think he proved he could win, but I don’t think he proved anything we didn’t know about him already,” Cooper said. “I don’t think he would be in the league if he wasn’t a good midfielder at this point. He’s been in the league for a long time, he’s a veteran and a really good player. We’re really happy to have him.”
Running backwards Karim Hunt was excited for Brisette.
“He’s doing a great job driving us and he’s hungry too, man,” Hunt said. “He’s a footballer who gets out there and shows what he can do.”
After Brissett completed 21 of 31 for 220 yards and two touchdowns without interception against the Steelers and ran three times for 11 yards, Browns coach Kevin Stefansky found a few things to contend with.
“He was solid. I have to make him go early and start our attack early,” Stefanski said. He made some throws and made some big throws at the big moments. fight. He’s doing a good job.”
But from his teammates Brissett, the raves kept coming.
“Under pressure, he makes the right plays, he does the right readings. He is very quiet in the pocket. He trusts us and we trust him,” said Jack Conklin, All-Pro Correct Handler.
“He has done a great job for us. He is just a charismatic and natural leader. He has a standard that he wants to play by and he wants to keep the players. It’s great to see,” said Joel Betonio, All-Pro left-hander. My midfield players are in the game, and I think he treats himself that way.”
Brissett even has supporters on the defensive side of the ball.
“He’s on point. He makes exceptional plays. It’s not like he’s just running the game,” said Jon Johnson III, Free Safety. “He creates things, buys time… It was incredible.
“The thing that caught my eye is that I’m looking up at the scoreboard and we scored 30 points or 29 so I’m like if we can score 30, there’s no reason for us to lose matches.”
Going into the season, the assumption was that the defense should hold Brown until Watson’s return. Nobody saw 28.3 points per game (seventh in the league) coming. Nobody outside Brown’s headquarters, that is.
After Brown’s visit to the Falcons, there will definitely be some rough times ahead. But so far these have been largely limited to defense and special teams. The heavy attack with Nick Chubb and Hunt was effective, especially with Brissett averaging 6.5 yards per attempt ranking 25th in the league. The Browns 378.7 yards per game are ranked ninth in the NFL.
Brissett has answered a lot of questions and silenced a lot of skeptics with three matches, although he doesn’t seem to care about outside perceptions.
“I’m not involved in this to answer anyone’s questions,” he said. “I am here to play good football, play with my teammates and enjoy this moment.
“That’s really what it’s all about. I can look these guys in the face and tell them I’m giving them my best. That’s what I’m looking forward to.”
Yes, we were wrong about Brissett. We were very, very wrong. So much so that in games that would be considered a no-brainer loss, Brissett might give the Browns a fighting chance.
Marla Ridenour can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MRidenourABJ.