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News and Notes: Browns continue day-to-day approach with QB Deshaun Watson after Sunday's hit

HC Kevin Stefanski breaks down the end-of-game series against the Colts 

News and Notes Week 8

As the Browns come off their 39-38 win over the Colts, HC Kevin Stefanski said that they used Monday to meet with players and review both the positives and the negatives in Sunday's win. They know it wasn't perfect, and for that, they know they can find ways to improve as they head into Week 8.

"Gutty win," HC Kevin Stefanski said. "Wasn't always pretty, but really pleased with how the team fought. A couple things to point out. I thought the two drives at the end of either half were huge, and those were offense, defense, special teams aided drives to get those points. Some unbelievable individual efforts throughout on all three sides of the ball."

So, as we head into Week 8, let's take a look at some of the news and notes from Monday.

Injury updates

Stefanski said that overall, he would have more information about injuries as the week continued, and that they are waiting on results from medical tests. However, the Browns are dealing with a few following the win on Sunday.

Stefanski said that they will continue to take a day-to-day approach with QB Deshaun Watson's shoulder injury. Watson started Sunday's game against the Colts, but then was hit in the first quarter and did not return for the remainder of the game.

"He's getting better. He's a competitive kid. He is working hard," Stefanski said.

RB Jerome Ford is dealing with an ankle injury he suffered in the fourth quarter on Sunday and did not return. DE Alex Wright continues to be in concussion protocol after he left Sunday's game and was evaluated for a head injury. Stefanski said that Wright is "trending the right way."

A deeper look at the game-ending series

With 33 seconds left in the game and the Browns down a score, the Browns were at the Colts 1-yard line with no timeouts left. QB P.J. Walker first threw a short incomplete pass to TE David Njoku. Then on second-down, Walker threw another short incomplete pass to Njoku. The Browns then went into third-down, and Walker threw a third incomplete pass to WR Elijah Moore.

Then, as the Browns lined up for fourth-and-goal, they handed the ball off to RB Kareem Hunt, who rushed for one yard for what would be the game-winning touchdown.

"Those four plays took years off my life," Stefanski said. "I'm sure everybody else."

Stefanski explained that the idea on the first pass attempt was to score the touchdown, and that they didn't necessarily want to wait until fourth down to score. However, they were also trying to manage the clock with the clock running after the first-down play. Stefanski said they were in 23 personnel, so they had big players on the field after the first down, and it can be more difficult to run plays out of that grouping.

"So, really mentality being, I knew we were on the one," Stefanski said. "I knew our fourth down call was going to score if we got to it, quite honestly. But I just didn't feel comfortable with the thought of a first down, a second down or a third down play that was going to not get in and then chew off valuable time. So felt confident in the plays we called and ultimately executed that last one."

Stefanski said the plan was to always to hand off to Hunt on fourth down to run the ball. But Stefanski heard from his offensive line in those final plays.

"The line, they were yelling at me. I saw Dawand (Jones) tell me it was a yard," Stefanski said. "I'm like, 'I got you, dude. I'll get there.'

RG Wyatt Teller said as an offensive line, they thought they should run the ball to get in the end zone. However, as they realized how much time was on the clock, they understood Stefanski's approach.

"Obviously he's thinking, he's playing chess, while we're like, oh, it's just checkers," Teller said. "You just go right here and hit them, and we score. But that being said, to run the ball in that fourth down, it shows that he had faith in the offensive line."

Praise for DE Myles Garrett

While the defense had some overall struggles as they allowed 38 total points and five touchdowns, Garrett's defensive dominance in the first half earned him a game ball from Stefanski following the game.

Garrett finished the game with seven tackles, two sacks and two forced fumbles. He also blocked K Matt Gay's 60-yard field goal attempt by jumping over their center and palmed the ball stop the kick.

"He played as good as you can play in a football game," Stefanski said. "He's dominated the game. It was a six-point swing there with the blocking the field goal sack, fumble, sacks previously to set up the offense. So, he's playing - I don't know if there's a higher level, but he's playing at it." 

His teammates echoed that sentiment. CB Greg Newsome II said that after Sunday's game, some of the players grabbed food together and were joking about his dominance in the first half.

"I was like, 'That's why you get paid the big bucks,'" Newsome said. "But nah, man, he's amazing. I said it before, he's the best defensive player in the league, and he's going to go down as one of the greatest defensive players to ever play the game. So glad to have him on our team. And a guy like that was able to make so many plays for us out there and bail us out a few times. So, it's just amazing to have him on our team."