This Browns season has been pure joy, and last Sunday’s win at Pittsburgh was the cherry on top.
That glorious victory was, in my opinion, the final thing you had to do to bury the bad football and all of the losing of the last two decades and fully embrace that this is a new version of the Browns that looks a lot like the Browns from the 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s. Being able to win in such an emphatic and decisive manner really buried all of the bad juju that was around this team since they came back in 1999. Now, this is truly like the Browns are back.
And these Browns are dangerous because they’ve fully embraced the “nobody believes in us” mindset.
They believe in themselves, they’re hungry, and the fact that they’re underdogs and that everybody’s telling them they’re not going to beat the Chiefs, plays right into their hands. It’s like a wrestler who embraces that underdog role. The more you say that they can’t do it, the more they believe in themselves they can do it.
The team has really taken on the mentality and the identity of Baker Mayfield in a lot of respects because Baker has always thrived off of his underdog role. He plays that perfectly, and he loves when people count him out and you can see that the Browns have really embraced that mentality as well. That motivates them not only to be better prepared, but also to be better able to handle any adversity that does happen and will happen in the game on Sunday.
A team that maybe doesn’t embrace that underdog mentality, that is not comfortable when adversity happens — like what happened with the Browns all last week with all of the different players and coaches out with COVID — they get a little bit shocked and are much more willing to accept losing as an outcome. With this Browns team, when something bad happens, it almost coalesces them and hardens their resolve and their will to continue playing even harder and more focused football. There’s always that belief that “We’re going find a way to be able to win this game. We don’t know how, but it’s going to come down to somebody, so everybody needs to just continue doing their 1/11 of their part when they get onto that field because at some point, it’s going to crack, the pendulum is going to swing in the other direction and we’re going to find a way to win.”