CLEVELAND, Ohio – The Browns play in Pittsburgh Sunday. Browns fans know what’s going on. The orange helmets went to Pittsburgh and they lost. But this year, I’m having an internal debate about maybe, maybe, winning Pittsburgh.
QUESTION: Can the Browns win in Pittsburgh?
Q: What NOT?
A: I just fell into the “Same Old Browns mindset.”; That will happen when the Browns have a 16-game road lost streak in Pittsburgh and rarely beat the Steelers in Cleveland.
Q: So you think it’s impossible for them to win in Pittsburgh?
A: I saw it happen.
Q: Did you?
A: I was there, October 5, 2003. It was starting at 8:30 p.m.
Q: Did you see them win in Pittsburgh? That is like saying you once saw a Triceratops on Euclid Avenue.
A: Final score: Browns 33, Steelers 13. Tim Couch (God bless him!) Is good. He completed 20 of 25 passes. He threw a pair of TDs, one to Andre ‘Davis and one to Kevin Johnson. He even ran for a 9-yard TD.
Q: Did they beat Big Ben in Pittsburgh?
A: That never happened again. Ben Roethlisberger is 12-0 vs. the Browns in Pittsburgh. But the Browns defeated QBs Tommy Maddox and Charlie Batch in that 2003 game.
Q: So you think …
A: I want to talk a little bit more about that game. Couch played the best game in his 5 year career. But all of his early career (116 in his first three years) damaged his body. That 2003 season was the last time he played an NFL game.
Q: But this year …
A: Courtney Brown has a pair of sacks. He forced a fumble and withdrew it. This is one of the best games of his career. The injuries will put him out of the NFL two years later. William Green ran for 115 yards. Butch Davis still seems to like the coach who led them to the 2002 playoffs.
Q: what happened
A: The couch hurt. Green was injured, then there were some personal problems. After the Pittsburgh victory, the Browns were 3-8 to end the 2003 season at 5-11.
Q: So you lost the grief and ruin of the Browns team?
A: I bring back a fond memory of the Browns from Pittsburgh. I am ready for another.
Q: Can it happen?
A: I have been wrong about the Browns until now. I chose them to finish 8-8. I thought they would start slow because of the new coaching staff, COVID-19, etc. Instead, they were 4-1 with four wins.
Q: But you worry, right?
A: Baker Mayfield has sore ribs. The QB said: “Kind of the whole right side. Everything is connected there. I was lucky the way I got it was not directly on my shoulder – kind of combined a little bit. Obviously, it could be a lot worse.”
Q: Will he play on Sunday?
A: Mayfield was beaten and hurt but did not miss a start. His starting wheel was 34 games for the Browns. Want some trivia?
A: When Mayfield was QB in the Browns’ 32-23 victory over the Colts last week at First Energy Stadium he was given 11 career wins in that field.
Q: That’s nice, so what?
A: He was tied to another QB for the most wins in the field …
Q: Please do not mention Ben Roethlisberger?
A: Ben Roethlisberger. He has an 11-2-1 record in Cleveland. So he won a lot in Cleveland as Mayfield.
Q: I’m changing the subject, how about Cam Heywood of Pittsburgh says he intends to “impose a good penalty” to Mayfield and his ribs?
A: What do you expect? This is Pittsburgh. This is football. You can expect some trash talk.
Q: What do you think of Myles Garrett’s reaction to playing his first game against the Steelers since last season?
A: I expect him to be a force, like the whole season with six sacks. I would be very surprised if there was a big fight with him in the middle. Garrett made a bad decision and was suspended for six games to finish last season. That is not his overall personality. He was a strong man growing up to be a great leader. Garrett is one reason I think about the Browns taking the lead in the 4-0 Steelers.
Q: Do you like others?
A: I want to say Nick Chubb, because he was developed for this kind of games. But the Pro Bowl running back was out with a sore knee. They have Kareem Hunt. They have a Bill Callahan zone blocking scheme. They have an offense similar to that used by former offensive Brown coordinator Kyle Shanahan. The formula led to the Browns losing to the Steelers and Roethlisberger 31-10 in Cleveland in 2014.
Q: Did you notice that Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin said “this is a big game”?
A: I did and he said it straight in the face, because that was true. This is not a change of weather. But he feels they are not The Same Old Browns. I was with him there, despite Roethlisberger’s career 23-2-1 record against the Browns.
Q: Let’s have this, what is your guess?
A: I rode with the Browns on their next win: Browns 23, Pittsburgh 20.
INCLUDED TERRY PLUTO COLUMNS
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New Brown face masks on sale: Here you can buy Cleveland Browns themed masks for coronavirus protection for adults and teens, including a single mask ($ 14.99) and a 3 -pack ($ 24.99). All NFL proceeds are donated to the CDC Foundation.