Attention turns back to Steelers following Browns 41-24 win over Dolphins

Sheldon Richardson hopes Mason Rudolph's benching was temporary

Daryl Ruiter
November 24, 2019 - 10:26 pm
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Cleveland, Ohio (92.3 The Fan) – The Browns paused the soap opera with the Steelers for a few hours Sunday to maul Miami and the hapless Dolphins 41-24.

Now it’s back to our regularly scheduled programming.

“Obviously, there has been a little bit of a circus around here recently,” linebacker Joe Schobert said. “I think we did a good job.”

Schobert hauled in 2 interceptions for the second straight game, had 5 tackles and broke up 4 other passes in the win that pushed the Browns within a game of .500 at 5-6 and back to the periphery of the AFC playoff race.

“The stuff in the media and all the talking that happens throughout the week isn’t our job,” Schobert said. “We have to obviously deal with it because you have to get it out to the fans, but everybody could lock in and focus on the game. I think everybody did that obviously, and it showed on the field.”

Unfortunately, there wasn’t much time to bask in the glow of a third straight victory.

Not with a trip to Pittsburgh in the offing.

“The biggest thing for us was trying to refocus and not let what we were going through distract us,” receiver Jarvis Landry, who caught 10 of 13 targets for 148 yards and 2 touchdowns against his former team said. “I think everyone had a great mindset coming into the game. Once they stepped in between the white lines, it’s about that game and going 1-0. We did that today.”

The first meeting between the Browns and Steelers saw 33 players fined, both franchises docked $250,000 each for a grand total of $1,309,628 heading to the league office in the aftermath of Myles being suspended indefinitely for ripping Mason Rudolph’s helmet off and hitting him in the head with it.

Garrett won’t be playing next Sunday but clearly the Browns hope Rudolph, who was benched in the third quarter of Pittsburgh’s 16-10 win at Cincinnati, does.

“I hope he plays,” defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson said.

When asked why, Richardson’s eyes got wide as he said, “Did you see him last game?”

Quarterback Baker Mayfield wasn’t interested in the Steelers’ QB controversy coming off a 327 yard and 3 touchdown performance against the Dolphins.

“No, I was actually playing a game while they were playing so I did not know that Mason was benched,” Mayfield said.

“I don’t really care what they did today. We had our job to do, and I will see the tape. I am not even playing directly against Mason. I will look at their defense and see what happened.”

The Rudolph benching was also news to head coach Freddie Kitchens, who like Mayfield, was indisposed when it happened.

“I did not know anything about it, and I do not have anything to comment about it,” Kitchens said. “We are going to show up and play Sunday. We are going to show up and prepare on Wednesday. I did not know that. I am not trying to avoid the question. I just had not heard anything about anything.”

Garrett, who had a fan punch him in the face last month with no retaliation other than calmly calling the police, claims Rudolph hurled a racial slur at him.

Rudolph denies it.

Prior to Sunday’s win over the Dolphins, owner Dee Haslam wore a winter hat with Myles Garrett’s No. 95 on it. The support for Garrett is unanimous throughout the organization.

“There was only controversy in the media, not in our locker room,” Richardson said.

Defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi returns after a 1-game ban while Steelers center Maurkice Pouncy served the second and final game of his reduced original 3-game ban.

Kitchens was able to keep his team focused on the Dolphins while the media’s attention was focused on the aftermath of the Garrett fiasco and melee that followed.

This week, the circus gets revved up again.

“It is a division game coming up so our guys will be ready to play,” Kitchens said.