CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - How do you replace a Nick Chubb? Well, you can’t. Not completely.
But, you can still put up some numbers.
In the win over the Cowboys, the Browns racked up 307 yards rushing -- 228 courtesy of the four running backs, 185 by players “not” named Chubb.
Of course, that was against the Cowboys, one of the worst defenses in football.
Now they get the Colts, the top-ranked defense in football.
“We totally understand what’s at stake,” head coach Kevin Stefanski said. “We totally understand the team that we’re getting ready to face on Sunday, because you just turn on the tape and it’s so obvious why they’re so good. They just fly around. I think our guys will be ready for the challenge.”
Kareem Hunt is the key. He wouldn’t say if the groin injury slowed him down a bit in Dallas, but ... he insists he’s feeling good and ready to go this week, and if he needs to carry the load, as he once did in Kansas City?
“Most definitely,” Hunt said. “I’m willing to do whatever it takes to help this team win. If that means more carries, I’m fine with that, too.”
“Kareem is a top back in the league,” Baker Mayfield said. “We’re blessed to have both those guys (Hunt and Chubb), but we trust in D’Ernest and Dontrell. But you said it, it starts up front.”
“I think we’ve all seen what Kareem and the other running backs can do, when Nick Chubb went down in Dallas,” tight end David Njoku, who returns this week after missing three games with a knee injury, said. “So I have full confidence in all of them.”
Which isn’t to say that this offense will be predictable. We’ve seen the Stefanski razzle-dazzle. We’ve seen how it demoralizes a defense. We’ll see it again.
It’s no accident the Browns are 3-1.
But they’ll have to keep proving themselves.
Baker was asked if he sees some people hanging on to the negatives of Browns’ past.
“Well, yeah, for starters you guys [the media,]” Mayfield said. “But other than that, around town.”