Cleveland Browns have guaranteed their best record in 11 years
Things in Cleveland have turned around since Baker Mayfield has shown up. After a 26-18 win against their division rivals, the Cincinnati Bengals, the Browns are 7-7-1 and have clinched their best record since they went 10-6 in 2007.
Over that span, the closest the Browns had been to be going over .500 was 2014 when they went 7-6. In 2016 the Browns went 1-15 and in 2017 they went 0-16.
The 2007 10-6 Browns were quarterbacked by Derek Anderson. Over the last two years, they started Robert Griffin III, Josh McCown, Cody Kessler, Charlie Whitehurst, Kevin Hogan, and DeShone Kizer. But since Tyrod Taylor left the game with an injury during Week 3 of this season, Baker Mayfield has shown why the Browns took him with the first overall pick in last year’s draft.
Mayfield entered the game in the second quarter against the New York Jets and led the team to their first win since Christmas Eve, 2016. They had previously tied the Pittsburgh Steelers in the first game of the season with Taylor under center.
After Week 8 of the season, the Browns fired head coach Hue Jackson, who had been hired in 2016 and won just three games during his tenure. They replaced him with defensive coordinator Gregg Williams. The Browns also fired offensive coordinator Todd Haley and replaced him with former running backs coach Freddie Kitchens.
Since Williams and Kitchens took over, Mayfield has thrown 16 touchdowns and five interceptions, three of which came in one game against the Houston Texans in Week 13. Unsurprisingly, the Browns have gone 5-2 over that span.
Next week, Mayfield and the Browns will have a lot on their plate as they head to Baltimore with their first winning season in 11 years on the line.