With the Bengals and Browns barreling down the fourth-quarter stretch, the final result was destined to be a gut punch for either Baker Mayfield or Joe Burrow. But neither could have imagined an ending that included five go-ahead touchdown passes in the fourth quarter, the first time in NFL history that has happened, according to Elias Sports.
This time, it was Burrow’s turn to walk away disappointed despite becoming the first Bengals rookie to pass for more than 400 yards. Mayfield, with an aching torso from a cracked rib, saw Odell Beckham Jr. leave the game early in the first quarter and overcame a horrific 0-for-5 start as Cleveland improved to 5-2 with a 37-34 victory in Cincinnati.
He did it by leading the Browns down the field on a drive that ended in a 24-yard touchdown pass to Donovan Peoples-Jones, who made a brilliant tiptoe catch in the end zone.
His heroics became necessary when Burrow, whose team was down three offensive line starters and running back Joe Mixon, led the Bengals on a 75-yard touchdown drive that ended with a 3-yard touchdown pass to Giovani Bernard with 1:09 left in the game. Burrow got two last chances with 11 seconds left, but his Hail Mary pass was broken up. He finished with 406 yards passing, completing 35 of 47 passes for three touchdowns and an interception.
As for Mayfield, he completed 22 of 28 passes (which meant that his only incompletion after the 0-for-5 start was a spike to stop the clock) for 297 yards and five touchdowns and an interception (on his first attempt of the day).
It was enough to shut the haters up for another week. And, for Burrow, enough to make people believers in a 1-5-1 team.