Biggest Plays

6 plays that changed the game in the Browns’ 21-7 win over the Steelers

The Browns defeated the Steelers, 21-7 on Thursday night at FirstEnergy Stadium to put another dent in their climb to the top of the wild card race.

The defense pulled through with late-game stops and two fourth quarter turnovers that helped seal the win.

Here are six plays that changed the game:

1. Joe Schobert’s 2nd interception of the night

Schobert has never been known to have a knack for interceptions. Entering Thursday, the linebacker only had two of them in his career.

He doubled that number against the Steelers, and the second of those interceptions came at the perfect time.

With 6 minutes left, the Steelers began a crucial drive at their own 9-yard line, Rudolph took the snap and stepped back looking for a deep pass to James Washington.

Instead, Schobert stepped in and snagged the ball and then returned it 24 yards to the Steelers’ 4-yard line.

That set up another big play for the Browns minutes later.

2. Stephen Carlson’s 1st career touchdown

Two plays after Schobert’s interception, the tight end hauled in his first career touchdown pass that gave the Browns a 21-7 lead with just over 5 minutes left.

Baker Mayfield found Carlson in the middle of the end zone and hit him with a pass in the chest to give Cleveland a two-possession lead that ultimately sealed the victory.

Carlson had only been on the active roster for three games this season. He pulled through with a huge touchdown that helped the Browns continue their season turnaround.

3. Juston Burris’ fourth-quarter interception

Burris sealed the game when he intercepted Rudolph for the quarterback’s second interception of the fourth quarter.

The safety stepped in front of a deep ball intended for Vance McDonald and returned it 27 yards to Cleveland’s 49.

That sent the Steelers’ offense off the field again and allowed the Browns to kill more time off the clock en route to the team’s second win in five days.

Check out photos of the Browns in action against the Steelers on Thursday Night Football

4. Mayfield connects with Landry to build a 14-0 lead

Red zone troubles? What red zone troubles?

The Browns had none of those in the first half and looked crisp inside the Steelers 20. They were 2-for-2 in the red zone in the first half and built a 14-0 lead when Mayfield lofted an easy pass to Jarvis Landry — completely uncovered by the Steelers defense — in the end zone.

The best part of the sequence, however, came after the touchdown. A penalty flag was thrown, and Mayfield waited, waited and waited a bit more for the referee to make the call (it was on the Steelers) before running to the sideline to celebrate.

5. Mayfield’s QB sneak

The Browns couldn’t have started the night any better.

First, a three-and-out from the defense. Then, a drive that featured a 20-yard completion to Kareem Hunt on third down and a 42-yard pass to Odell Beckham Jr.

It ended with Mayfield receiving a push in the back from Nick Chubb on a 1-yard quarterback sneak to cross the end zone. That came just one play after Beckham’s completion — originally ruled a touchdown — was overturned. That didn’t faze the Browns one bit. An early 7-0 lead was in the books.

6. Cleveland’s fourth-and-2 stop

The Steelers were 2 yards away from taking a big step toward cutting into the Browns’ 14-7 lead with 13 minutes left.

The play was from Cleveland’s 33-yard line, and the Browns brought the pressure to Rudolph. As the pocket collapsed, Rudolph panicked and nearly threw an interception directly into the chest of Chad Thomas.

Thomas dropped the pass, but the Browns still made the stop, and what could’ve been a key drive for Pittsburgh turned into zero points.

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