Dorian Thompson-Robinson shined bright as the Browns took down the New York Jets, 21-16, in the annual Hall of Fame game.
"He made some nice plays," head coach Kevin Stefanski said of Thompson-Robinson, a fifth-round rookie out of UCLA. "He made some plays with his feet. I felt the route on the touchdown was outstanding. Good read, good throw, had some really good moments."
In the third quarter, Thompson-Robinson replaced Kellen Mond and promptly guided the Browns to an 11-play, 93-yard touchdown drive. He utilized both his throwing and running ability to move the chains successfully. The drive concluded with a Demetric Felton Jr. 16-yard touchdown run, in which Thompson-Robinson provided a crucial block.
"That's all instincts," Thompson-Robinson said. "I'm out there playing as hard as I can for my teammates. Coach Stefanski and (offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt) always preach to run through the football, even on the offensive side of the ball and being able to pick your brother up, so that's kind of what that was.
"I saw Felt was going to cut back and kind of how the hole was going to open up, and all he had was one person to beat backside, which was the corner. So I figured I'd stick my nose in there real quick."
Check out photos of the Browns against the Jets in the Hall of Fame Game
Thompson-Robinson didn't have to wait too long to score his first touchdown. In the fourth quarter, he led a nine-play, 78-yard drive that ended with a 22-yard pass to Austin Watkins, giving the Browns a 21-16 lead.
"It was one in Kellen's first three drives when he got the same play and same look," Thompson-Robinson said. "I was paying attention the whole time in the first half trying to get clues on their defensive signals so we got the same look on my play I figured if I moved the safety and linebacker over a little bit I can have a chance backside. it just so happened to work."
In addition to his passing skills, Thompson-Robinson demonstrated impressive speed by rushing for 37 yards on just five carries. He completed 8-of-11 passes for a total of 82 yards.
In the moments after the final whistle, Thompson-Robinson got to spend some time with one of the quarterbacks he's idolized, Jets veteran Aaron Rodgers. The two embraced and talked as fans streamed out of Tom Benson Stadium.
"(Rodgers said) just how proud he is of me," Thompson-Robinson recalled of the conversation. "He has been keeping up on me for a couple years now for us to form a relationship now that I am in the league. It's pretty special for me."