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Baker Mayfield, Rams comeback win aids Browns playoff hopes slightly

The Raiders are a mess but were tied with the Browns

NFL: Las Vegas Raiders at Los Angeles Rams Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

For some Cleveland Browns fans, what happens to QB Baker Mayfield will always be interesting to them. Maybe not to the extent that Oklahoma Sooners fans ride or die with the former Heisman Trophy winner but “what if?” questions remain with the quarterback that led the team to the playoffs in 2020.

For other fans, Mayfield doesn’t play for the team so talking about him is meaningless.

Today, Mayfield’s play had a slight impact on the Browns so we get a chance to placate both parts of the fan base.

Last night, after just two days with the team, Mayfield led the Los Angeles Rams to a comeback victory against the Las Vegas Raiders. Aided by a couple of big penalties, including one where the defensive lineman swiped the ball out of the QBs hand well after the play, Mayfield drove his team down the field 98 yards in under two minutes with no timeouts left to get the victory.

Mayfield will (and should) be the talk of the NFL on Friday.

For Cleveland, the Rams victory helps knock one team out of the way in their playoff hopes. The Raiders were sitting at 5-7 going into Thursday Night Football, tied with the Browns. Both teams would have had to win out to have any hope of making the playoffs. Last night’s loss all but eliminates Las Vegas from those chances now.

Going into this weekend, Cleveland is now just tied with the Pittsburgh Steelers but the two teams play each other in Week 18. Both can’t win out. The Browns still have a long, long path to the playoffs with the four teams directly ahead of them having already beaten them head-to-head this season.

Mayfield’s late-game heroics, which included another long touchdown drive scoring with just over three minutes left in the game, helped get one team out of the way but there are bigger fish to fry for Cleveland starting with this week’s game with the Cincinnati Bengals.