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Game Day

Nick Chubb's patience pays off in monster performance against Falcons

Nick Chubb has been here before.

He's had to wait behind a more experienced running back. He's accrued the mental reps when all he wants are the physical. And he's told himself to stay patient, that his time will come.

In college, Chubb emerged as a star when Georgia lost Todd Gurley to injury. Now, he's delivering in a big way for a Browns team that traded away veteran Carlos Hyde last month. 

"It's the same pattern my freshman year at Georgia," Chubb said. "Waiting behind Todd Gurley then getting a chance and taking advantage of it. I learned when you do get a chance, you gotta take advantage of it." 

Chubb did just that against the Falcons, accounting for 209 yards and two touchdowns, including a 92-yarder that broke both the franchise record for longest run of all time. Chubb broke through a hole between the right guard and tackle, ran through a defenders arms at his own 22 and followed the advice of the waving Antonio Callaway, who directed Chubb toward an inside lane rather than the sideline. 

The crowd's roar crescendoed as Chubb crossed the goal line, and his teammates tackled him in celebration better than the Falcons could all game. "It definitely is very special," Chubb said of breaking the record. "Just being in this place with so much history and so many great running backs. To be a part of it, breaking records, it is a great feeling."

Count rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield among those who have taken notice of Chubb's talent. Mayfield, who watched Chubb run for 145 yards and two touchdowns in a win win over his Oklahoma Sooners last year, said he's happy to have the bruising back on his side now. 

"It is a lot better when he is on my team," Mayfield said. "He is a physical runner. He is able to impose his will. The runs that sometimes end in just four yards, he is turning them into six and seven-plus. It is really good to have a guy like that on your team."

Chubb's been on the team all year, but he's only recently taken on a larger role. Mayfield roomed with Chubb during rookie minicamp and watched his foe-turned-friend long for the chance to showcase his skills since. But on Sunday, Mayfield watched Chubb's patience culminate into a game-changing, record-breaking performance from the best seat in the stadium.

"He's been waiting for his time," Mayfield said. "He never expected anything else. I am very happy for him."