If it wasn’t clear to you before that the Browns and Chargers were two of the best teams in the league, then you need to go to Jameis Winston’s eye doctor.
What’s wild about this contest is that the Browns played one of the cleanest games I’ve ever seen from a team that took an L. It’s like Cleveland got a fresh fade, picked up some new drip, and got a raise at their job, and the girl they wanted still curved them.
According to ESPN Stats and Info, the Browns are the first team in NFL history to lose when either having 40 points and zero turnovers or having 40 points, 500 yards, and zero turnovers.
The Browns got the ball back with a chance to win the game with 1:31 left on the clock and no timeouts after a back-and-forth fourth quarter that saw touchdowns being scored at the same rate of inflation.
This game came down to one team having a guy behind center that has the “It” factor and the other not so much. In other words, one team had Justin Herbert and the other had Baker Mayfield. Don’t get me wrong, Mayfield played extremely well, throwing for 305 yards and two touchdowns yesterday, but when he got the ball back with a chance to win it for this team he could barely get the ball to the 50-yard line.
Justin Herbert had five total touchdowns and close to 400 yards passing, and delivered every time his team needed him to do so late in the game.
Mayfield doesn’t need to be as dynamic as Herbert or other quarterbacks of that same caliber for the Browns to win. His team is good enough around him that he only needs to be efficient to give his squad the chance to win. There’s only one thing that’s holding Mayfield back from being a Super Bowl-caliber quarterback, and that’s his ability to make plays when it matters consistently.
Both of these teams have a great chance to represent the AFC in L.A. in Super Bowl LVI once this is all said and done, but it’s clear one of these squads has a distinct advantage over the other.