The losing has slowed Youth Joe Thuney Jersey , but hasn't stopped for the ever-rebuilding Browns. They're in the midst of yet another coaching search, and the NFL playoffs are likely to come and go without them again this season 鈥?the 16th straight postseason since their most recent appearance.But as Cleveland hit its bye week, and with six games left in another season going nowhere, optimism abounds around a franchise that has had little to celebrate over the past 25 years.The dark days of despair are dwindling.Baker Mayfield is making them go away.The fearless rookie quarterback with the contagious personality, touchdown-making skills and trash-talking bravado, has the Browns 鈥?and their long-suffering fans 鈥?believing."It's not everything, but it's everything," guard Joel Bitonio said with a smile when asked about Mayfield's magnetism and positive influence. "You've got to have a quarterback to win in the NFL and it hasn't been perfect, but to have him out there with you, there's always that hope that, 'Hey, we have a chance to win this game.'"The No. 1 overall pick in this year's draft, Mayfield is changing the Browns (3-6-1) with his actions on and off the field. He's already endured years of chaos in just 10 games as Cleveland has changed coaches, traded its top playmaker (Josh Gordon) and leading rusher (Carlos Hyde), suffered numerous injuries and a few of those punch-in-the stomach losses that the Browns have seemingly mastered.But every time the Browns have taken a hard hit, Mayfield has responded with one of his own."We've got a quarterback who knows how to fight," said defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah. "You want to play for a guy like that who inspires you. He comes to the defensive side of the ball like, 'Hey, we're still in this. Just give me one more chance out there.' Guys on defense love that. They love a quarterback who can go out there and make a promise and say Youth Ja'Whaun Bentley Jersey , 'Hey, I've got your back.'"Mayfield, who has gotten better every week, hasn't won the respect of his teammates. He's earned it.The Browns didn't hand the starting job to Mayfield, who began the season in a backup role before starter Tyrod Taylor suffered a concussion in Week 3 against the New York Jets on national TV. Mayfield came in and led the Browns to their first win since 2016, snapping a 19-game winless streak and providing a preview of bigger things to come.It hasn't been perfect so far. Mayfield has made his share of rookie mistakes, forcing passes, holding onto the ball too long, missing open receivers. But in the past four games, Mayfield has completed 69 percent of his passes with nine touchdowns and just two interceptions.Despite winning the Heisman Trophy and going 33-6 as a starter at Oklahoma, Mayfield wasn't considered the top prospect in this year's ballyhooed rookie QB class, which includes Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen and Josh Allen. Mayfield was too short, too cocky, too much a product of Sooners coach Lincoln Riley's system.Well, Mayfield has outperformed the other rookies across the board."He's developing as a quarterback," said Browns general manager John Dorsey, the man who went out on a limb and picked Mayfield. "He is still a rookie quarterback. He has demonstrated certain things during the course of a game that get you excited. I think that if you would ask him as a person, he still has a lot more football to master the position that he plays. I think he will continue to do that."Last week Youth Tom Brady Jersey , after being encouraged by interim coach Gregg Williams and his teammates to "cut it loose and play," Mayfield delivered the signature performance and victory of his fledgling pro career.He completed his first 13 passes, finished 17 of 20 with three touchdown passes and outplayed Atlanta quarterback and 2016 NFL MVP Matt Ryan as the Browns ended a four-game losing streak with a 28-16 win.Following the game, Mayfield smiled and said he woke up "feeling dangerous" before de-feathering the Falcons, who had their playoff hopes severely shaken.The comment might have come off as cocky to some, but it was Mayfield at his playful and bragging best, displaying the swagger that made him a college superstar and has endeared him to his Cleveland teammates.Make no mistake, at 23 and only 10 games into his NFL life, Mayfield is the Browns' undisputed leader, the tone-setter."He's taken the role head-first, never looking back," said rookie running back Nick Chubb, who rushed for 176 yards in the win. "He brings that energy and burst that we need. This team will follow him anywhere. He is just a great leader, and you know no matter what is going on around us or outside noise just the bad stuff that has not gone well for us, he is going to give us all 100 percent and he is not going to let it affect him."We like that in our quarterback and our leader, and he is fiercely competitive. He gives 100 percent every play. Just being on the team with him, everyone just likes it and loves him and loves who he is."The praise from Chubb and others fuel him."To me, there is nothing better than that," Mayfield said. "As a quarterback http://www.thepatriotsfootballauthentic … -authentic , and as somebody that wants to be a leader of this team, it does not get better than that."In Cleveland, things are getting a lot better. FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — Historically, Tom Brady has been hesitant to express satisfaction when it comes to the Patriots‘ offense.His approach has remained unchanged this season about a group that only recently has started to find consistency after a 1-2 start. The passing attack particularly has suffered during that time because of his lack of cohesion with a new group of receivers.Brady didn’t eclipse 300 yards passing in any of New England’s first three games, averaging 208 yards through the air with six total touchdowns.Things have changed during the Patriots’ current six-game win streak, in which Brady has averaged 308 yards per game and thrown 11 TDs.It’s progress, Brady said, but what he hopes is only a glimpse at where they can be as the Patriots prepare for Sunday’s matchup at Tennessee.“I don’t think we’re there. Certainly not. I think we need some more time together,” he said Friday. “We need to be kind of battle-tested in these games.”While Brady credits the entire offense’s dedication in the film room and its attention to detail in game plans, the acquisition of receiver Josh Gordon in Week 3 and return of Julian Edelman after missing last season with a torn right ACL have been big factors.Gordon has shown a different facet of his athleticism each week. He posted his best game in a Patriots uniform in last week’s win over the Packers, finishing with five catches for 130 yards and a touchdown. The score came on a 55-yard catch-and-run that gave New England some needed distance on the scoreboard in the fourth quarter. It was his second 55-yard catch this season.In six games with New England, Gordon has 22 catches for 396 yards and two TDs.Likewise, Edelman has started to look like the go-to target Brady has depended on in recent years. He followed his first 100-yard receiving game of the season at Buffalo in Week 8 with six catches for 71 yards against Green Bay.“I think his mental and physical toughness are just unmatched in a lot of ways,” Brady said of Edelman. “I have so much confidence in him. He really does all the dirty work for us, you know? He’s so scrappy and goes in there and blocks hard, catches balls over the middle. We put him in a lot of different positions and he always seems to come through for us.”In the aftermath of his trade Gordon said he had no doubt he was going to take advantage of the opportunity with the Patriots following a tumultuous tenure with the Browns that included his receiving treatment for drug and alcohol dependence, and several suspensions.He has flourished in New England’s strict environment, which he called comfortable and “a real home.” He’s also benefited from building a quick rapport with Brady.“It’s great that he has a certain amount of trust in me to put it in my direction Womens Cordarrelle Patterson Jersey ,” Gordon said. “And, I just want to come down and make a play on it.”Brady said Gordon, who debuted in the Week 4 win over Miami, has exceeded expectations.“I think he’s done really everything the coaches have asked him to do. Here early, stays late, always getting extra reps at practice, takes as many reps as he can, and it’s been fun to see,” he said.It’s all helped mask a drop-off in production this season by tight end Rob Gronkowski, who has missed two of the last three games with ankle and back injuries. He has 29 catches for 448 yards, but has only one TD on the season.Gronk is officially listed as questionable for Sunday after being limited in practice all week. He declined to say if he thought he was physically ready to play, adding the decision of whether he traveled to Nashville or suited up was not his own.“It’s up to the coaches,” he said.Whatever personnel Brady has available to him, he is adamant that there’s still another level for this offense to reach before season’s end.“Things that we do well we’re going to keep building on, and things that we’re not doing well, you try them maybe a different year or different players,” he said. “We’re still trying to figure those things out.”