Browns win first playoff game since 1995 with 48-37 triumph over Steelers

PITTSBURGH (AP)– A lot for the weight of background. Or exercising. Or having your head coach on the sideline. Or your emotional leader on the field.

The Cleveland Browns conquered all of it, dismantling the Pittsburgh Steelers 48-37 in the wild-card round Sunday evening.

It’s the franchise’s very first postseason victory in greater than a quarter century and also made Cleveland a trip to Kansas City following Sunday to face the protecting Super Bowl champ Chiefs.

Playing with first-year head trainer Kevin Stefanski, Pro Dish guard Joel Bitonio and also leading cornerback Denzel Ward back in Cleveland after all evaluated positive for COVID-19, Cleveland (12-5) competed to the most significant initial half by a road group in NFL playoff history after that hung on.

“Our teamed believe,” quarterback Baker Mayfield stated. “Individuals on the outside don’t matter to us. It’s on the within as well as our teamed believe during, and also that’s all that matters.”

Mayfield tossed for 263 yards and also 3 touchdowns, including a screen pass that Nick Chubb developed into a 40-yard rating that halted Pittsburgh’s momentum after the Steelers had drawn within 12. Kareem Quest added 48 lawns and also 2 touchdowns on the ground while Cleveland’s defense compelled five turn overs to hand the Steelers (12-5) an incredible loss.

The success was the Browns’ first postseason triumph of any kind because beating New England on New Year’s Day 1995– 3 months before Mayfield was born– and their initial playoff win when traveling considering that Dec. 28, 1969.

They did it in spite of exercising just as soon as over the last two weeks and also having actually lost 17 directly at Heinz Area. They did it with effectiveness as well as a little of swagger. And also they did it with special teams planner Mike Priefer– a Cleveland native– filling in for Stefanski as well as with offending coordinator Alex Van Pelt– that played collegiately at Pitt– taking over the play-calling duties.

“We have a durable team,” Mayfield stated. “Defense played wonderful in the initial half and also we kind of delayed out and also let them climb back in the video game, yet that’s a wonderful group win right there– people stepping up around the board. I take pride in these guys.”

The Steelers (12-5) absolutely aided, ending a season in which they began 11-0 with a thud that could resound for years. Ben Roethlisberger ended his resurgence period by tossing for 501 yards on an NFL-record 47 conclusions with four goals as well as four interceptions.

The 48 points were the most the Steelers have actually surrendered in the playoffs, exceeding the 45 they quit to Jacksonville in the 2017 playoffs.

Pittsburgh’s troubles began on the first play from skirmish when facility Maurkice Pouncey’s snap cruised by Roethlisberger right to the end zone. Cleveland’s Karl Joseph fell on it for a goal. The miscues were just starting. Roethlisberger threw 3 first-half interceptions, two of which led straight to Browns scores.

By the time the Steelers found their ground, they were down 28-0. Even when they did obtain it taking place a 1-yard goal run by James Conner with 1:44 to enter the half, the Browns stormed right back. Mayfield covered a cathartic opening fifty percent with a skillful 64-yard drive that finished with a 7-yard toss to Austin Hooper that put Cleveland up 35-7 at the break.

Pittsburgh– much as it did in its last playoff appearance 3 years earlier, a dismayed defeat at residence to Jacksonville– tried to claw back in it. The Steelers drew within 35-23 at the end of the third quarter. Facing fourth-and-1 at the Pittsburgh 46, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin decided to punt.Related Articles Rams ‘injury concerns include in challenge of dealing with Packers Drew Brees, Saints pull

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  • Washington It didn’t work out. The kick jumped into completion area for a touchback as well as Mayfield calmly took

  • Cleveland 80 lawns in six plays. The sideline emerged as Chubb streaked right into the

end zone. A lot for the Browns being the Browns, a winking assessment Steelers large receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster made regarding Cleveland in the middle of the week.

No matter the intent– Smith-Schuster’s teammates urged he was kidding– Mayfield as well as All-Pro defensive end Myles Garrett took it to heart. After that, before a mainly empty stadium and a national target market so familiar with seeing them stumble, the Browns took out their irritation. INJURIES Browns: All-Pro deal with Jake Conklin was

removed to play after being provided as doubtful with an”health problem”on Friday. His return didn’t last long. He exited in the initial fifty percent with a hamstring

injury. Guard Michael Dunn

, tipping in for Bitonio, left in the 4th quarter with a calf issue. Steelers: Rookie linebacker Alex Highsmith and also defensive back Mike Hilton both sustained injuries in the second fifty percent and also did not return. UP NEXT Browns: Will make their very first divisional-round look considering that the 1994 playoffs when they deal with the

Chiefs. Steelers: Head into what will be a busy offseason. A number of top-level gamers, including Smith-Schuster as well as outside linebacker Bud Dupree, will come to be complimentary agents

. The 38-year-old Roethlisberger will certainly likewise have to determine whether he intends to return for an 18th season.

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