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Winners & Losers: Arizona Cardinals Boat Race Cleveland Browns

A look at who showed up and who did not for the Cleveland Browns in their losing effort to the Arizona Cardinals.

Cleveland dropped their second game in a row when Arizona got out to a fast start and the Browns were never able to recover. The Cardinals pitched a second-half shutout that did not allow the Browns to get back into it.

Though the Browns lost, there were players who stood out and helped the team. On the other hand there were some players who just did not have it.


Donovan Peoples-Jones

Peoples-Jones was the overall MVP for the Cleveland Browns through their losing effort. The second year wideout caught a pass, ran over a defender for his first touchdown. On the second score Peoples-Jones caught a 57-yard prayer of a pass to end the half from Baker Mayfield. The Michigan product shined when Beckham Jr. went to the locker room with an apparent shoulder injury. Really good day for a player that’s stock is trending up.

Odell Beckham Jr.

Beckham looked like Beckham on Sunday. Not the biggest day of production, 13 finished with five catches for 79 yards. It was nice to see Beckham Jr. and Mayfield connect on a couple of 20+ yard plays. Beckham Jr. was open often and definitely was a boost to the Cleveland offense that had a minimal running game.

Jamie Gillan

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Last week I had Gillan on the other side of the list and he rebounded. It may be because the Browns are possibly trying out a kicker this week per 247 sports Brad Stainbrook, or he may have found his boot again. Gillan only had two punts as the team went for it on fourth down multiple times. Cleveland’s punter sent punts of 54 yards and 52 yards. That will do 10 out of 10 times. The Browns could use a field flipper, like any team could. Gillan’s punting on Sunday was spectacular.


Denzel Ward

If Ward had an offer on the table for a new contract before the season started, he maybe should have taken it. Ward has not been great this year, he’s been okay — good at times. Yesterday Ward had a tough matchup with DeAndre Hopkins, one that did not go his way. Ward had a pair of pass interferences and was wondering involved in a couple of blown coverages, whether it was on him or not. If the Browns re-sign Ward, they at least get a solid corner. But, with his play this year, they will not have to give him lockdown corner money. If he is wanting such money then you let him walk.

James Hudson

Hudson was a lost cause at right tackle and it was bad. Going from Jack Conklin to Hudson was like going from the majors to the minors. The right side allowed pretty consistent pressure, much of it coming from Hudson. From technique to execution Hudson needs work. Best case scenario for the Browns is that he does not have to play again this season.

There was struggles from Ronnie Harrison and Troy Hill as well. Harrison continues to look better suited in the box and is sometimes lost in coverage. Hill had a costly lapse that cost the Browns six points when he bit to the wrong wide receiver and Kyler Murray took advantage of it. 

Brandon Little is a writer for Sports Illustrated’s Browns Digest website and you can follow him on Twitter here. You can follow Browns Digest on Twitter as well here.