BEREA, Ohio (WJW)– When the Cleveland Browns play the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, it’ll be under different circumstances than years past. The Browns are on a four-game winning streak with their best start since 1994.
It’s also just the second matchup between the teams since the infamous incident involving Browns defensive end Myles Garrett and Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph.
An on-field fight broke out during the last 8 seconds of the Thursday night game on Nov. 14. It escalated when Garrett ripped off Rudolph’s helmet and hit him in the head with it. Garrett was issued longest suspension for a single on-field incident in league history.
“Nobody likes having their season cut short,” said Browns running back Kareem Hunt, who’s dealt with a suspension for off-the-field conduct. “Myles is a great person and a great player and a great teammate. And you learn a lot going through situations like that.”
Hunt said the team has to keep their emotions in check and play between the whistles.
“We love Myles. We got Myles’ back no matter what and he knows that. You can’t ask for a better teammate.”
That sentiment was echoed by other Browns players during Zoom calls with reporters on Wednesday.
“We’re always going to have our teammates backs,” said Browns center and NFLPA President JC Tretter. “Myles is one of us. He’s done a great job of taking a real step this year of being a leader on this team… He’s ready to go play football and this is just another game for him.”
Growing into a leader has also meant developing a stronger bond with quarterback Baker Mayfield. Baker said he and Garrett realize why they were brought to Cleveland: to win meaningful football games.
“Not everything is said between us. There’s certain looks we know what we’re thinking,” the QB said.
“Obviously, the stats and the sacks speak for himself,” Mayfield said. “It’s not just Myles’ play as an individual, it’s other things that teams have to worry about.”
The Steelers host the Browns at 1 p.m. Sunday.
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