What We Saw: Week 5

The What We Saw team recaps everything you missed from Sunday's games

Chargers @ Browns

Final Score: Chargers 30, Browns 28

Writer: Ryan Radel (@RadelFF on Twitter)


Even with the Browns having a 12th man on the field, the game came down to a last-second kick from a once-heralded rookie kicker in Cleveland, but it missed wide and took the dwindling hopes of Browns fans with it. The Chargers’ rushing attack stole the spotlight from Cleveland’s dynamic backfield duo, which is no easy task. After sitting through a 15-inning baseball game yesterday (go Guardians!) it was nice to enjoy a high-scoring game.


Los Angeles Chargers




Justin Herbert: 22/34, 228 Yards, TD, Sack | 5 Carries, 13 Yards


This was certainly not Herbert’s best game as a professional, but even his “bad” games could pass as “great” for other quarterbacks in the league. Justin Herbert did a great job of avoiding pressure all game, maintaining pocket presence, and stepping up into the pocket when necessary. The protection scheme was good enough to offset the pass-rushing duo of Myles Garrett and Jadeveon Clowney. In a game where your rushing attack is the best it’s been the entire season, you don’t really have to do a lot. Overall, it seemed like Herbert was calm, cool, and collected all game. How can you not like this guy?



Running Back


Austin Ekeler: 16 Carries, 173 Yards, TD | 4 Targets, 4 Receptions, 26 Yards, TD

Joshua Kelley: 10 Carries, 49 Yards, TD | 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 33 Yards

Zander Horvath: 2 Carries, 3 Yards

Sony Michel: 1 Carry


The Chargers’ run game absolutely dominated the Browns’ defense. There’s really no other way to put it when a team averages 7.0 yards per carry. Joshua Kelley split carries throughout the game and received some ever-valuable red-zone touches, one of which he was able to plunge into the end zone for a five-yard score. The Chargers kept the running backs involved in the passing game as well, with the group bringing in all six of their targets.

Austin Ekeler somehow managed to outdo himself after Week 4’s huge performance, setting a career-high in rushing yards while putting the team on his back. Falling just a single yard short of 200 all-purpose yards, Eekeler feasted on the Browns’ week front seven all game long. Ekeler certainly isn’t the biggest back in football, but when you have this level of agility, you don’t need to be:



This guy teleports through the line of scrimmage.


Wide Receiver/Tight End


Mike Williams: 13 Targets, 10 Receptions, 134 Yards

Joshua Palmer: 6 Targets, 3 Receptions, 24 Yards

DeAndre Carter: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 9 Yards

Gerald Everett: 3 Targets, 1 Reception, 2 Yards

Donald Parham Jr.: 1 Target

Tre’ McKitty: 2 Targets


With Keenan Allen sidelined for another week, Joshua Palmer was on the field for a majority of the game as the Chargers’ second wideout. He received six targets but was only able to bring in three of them for a meager 24 yards. Palmer unfortunately wasn’t able to overcome the talented Browns’ secondary on most of the misses. DeAndre Carter and Gerald Everett received a handful of targets but, similar to Palmer, were not able to do much with them.

Herbert’s favorite receiver without Keenan Allen remains big play threat Mike Williams, who brought in 10 of 13 targets for 134 yards but was held out of the end zone. Williams almost had an even bigger day, as he just barely stepped out of bounds bringing in a ball at the front of the end zone early in the matchup. Herbert looked his way all game as Williams continued to get open. When coverage was able to keep up with him, he simply does stuff like this:



Cleveland Browns




Jacoby Brissett: 21/34, 230 Yards, TD, INT | 3 Carries, 32 Yards


The stat sheet for Jacoby Brissett wasn’t terrible, but there was more than one moment where he made the incorrect read, which may have ultimately cost the Browns the game.  Brissett’s athletic ability comes in handy when protection breaks down, as he isn’t afraid to tuck it and run. Brissett continues to complete less than 65% of his passes, ending today with around a 62% rate. If the Browns’ offensive fantasy assets want to grow moving forward, either Brissett’s decision-making or his accuracy needs to improve a bit. This is still the best quarterback play Cleveland has had in a decade, although his fantasy ceiling is limited due to previously mentioned factors. Brissett likely will not be fantasy relevant for his time as the Browns starter.



Running Back


Nick Chubb: 17 Carries, 134 Yards, 2 TD | 1 Target

Kareem Hunt: 11 Carries, 47 Yards, TD | 3 Targets, 3 Receptions, 10 Yards


If you told me the Browns’ rushing attack would average 6.9 yards a carry on the way to 213 yards and still get outrushed by the Chargers before this game I probably would’ve laughed at you, but alas, here we are. Kareem Hunt was more involved in the passing game than his counterpart, per usual, but was kept under control for the most part. Hunt received a bit of valuable red zone work and was able to leap over the pile for a short-yardage score late in the third quarter. His involvement continues to remain at an ideal level in a run-heavy offense although he will remain second fiddle in the rushing attack.

Nick Chubb continues to be an absolute madman on the ground as he carries the Browns’ offense week to week. His combination of elite strength and agility makes him the hardest running back to bring down in the NFL. He will continue to be featured in this high-powered Browns offense.



Wide Receiver/Tight End


David Njoku: 6 Targets, 6 Receptions, 88 Yards

Amari Cooper: 12 Targets, 7 Receptions, 76 Yards, TD

Donovan Peoples-Jones: 7 Targets, 4 Receptions, 50 Yards

David Bell: 1 Target, 1 Reception, 6 Yards

Harrison Bryant: 1 Target

Anthony Schwartz: 1 Target


The David Njoku breakout might be happening right before our eyes as he brought in all six of his targets for 88 yards. If you subtract Week 1 (1 target, 1 reception,) Njoku is averaging seven targets a game. While he has only found the end zone once so far this season, the Browns continue to design plays for him throughout the game. His involvement has grown week to week and is trending in the right direction as he continues to perfect his pass-catching prowess.

Brissett missed Donovan Peoples-Jones downfield a couple of times, as DPJ was mostly kept quiet until the second half, where he brought in three balls for 49 yards on a single drive. A clear trend is emerging for Amari Cooper: start him at home. Cooper has had at least seven receptions for 75 yards and a score in all three of the Browns’ home games this season. And that is with a less-talented quarterback throwing to him to start the season. When you run routes like this, you are a very quarterback-friendly wideout:



Yet another sad loss for my Cleveland Browns. I hope your fantasy teams had better luck. Thank you again for reading – we wouldn’t be here without you. On to week six!

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