‘He’s got to be smarter than that’: Rib injury was an obvious distraction for Baker Mayfield says former Cleveland Browns running back

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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WJW) – Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield says the lingering rib injury heading into Pittsburgh didn’t affect his game.

He was cleared to play and head coach Kevin Stefanski says he checked in with him before the game.

But clearly, it was a factor. Baker was pulled in the third quarter after four sacks and two interceptions.

Former Browns running back Gregg Pruitt tells FOX 8 that playing through the pain took away Baker’s focus on the game.

“As a quarterback, your mind has got to be on the game,” Pruitt said Monday.

“I know he made the comment that his mom didn’t raise no wuss, but he’s got to be smarter than that. If he’s not able to be 100%…he should let somebody else play,” Pruitt shared.  

Baker had made that comment during the postgame last week about whether he would play in Pittsburgh, following his injury against the Indianapolis Colts.

Although the Cleveland Browns have looked like a better team under Stefanski, Sunday’s 38-7 loss might best be described as sobering.

“That was a no-show yesterday,” said Pruitt.

A better Browns team still doesn’t look capable of competing with top tier talent in the AFC North on the Pittsburgh Steelers (5-0) and the Baltimore Ravens (5-1).

The Browns move to 4-2 on the season and will play another game on the road in Cincinnati.

The Browns won their first game with the Bengals earlier this season.

Baker is expected to start.  

“Baker will start as long as he is healthy,” Stefanski said after the game.

Kickoff is at 1 p.m.

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