CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Browns sent most of the 59,392 fans inside FirstEnergy Stadium home happy Sunday with a 26-20 victory over the Carolina Panthers
But rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield believes the team needs even more support from the fans when they return to Cleveland for the home finale against the Cincinnati Bengals on December 23.
“We would love to have more fan support," Mayfield said.
With 59,392 of a possible 67,895 seats full for Sunday's game, the Browns were at 88 percent capacity.
“Today was cold, I get it, but having more people, especially at our last home game coming up, we would love to have more people in the stands cheering for us because we feed off of the energy," Mayfield said.
“You can tell. It is very obvious. I do not have to say it how our defense feeds off of the energy in the stadium and being able to start fast and get that going and put teams in a bind and put pressure on them.”
Including the win over the Panthers, the Browns have improved to 4-2-1 in front of the home fans this season, which is the best mark since the team finished 4-4 at FirstEnergy Stadium in 2014.
By winning Sunday, the Browns secured an above .500 record at home for the first time since the 2007 season, when they posted a 10-6 overall record and were 7-1 in Cleveland games. Those seven wins were consecutive after a season-opening 34-7 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
However, the Browns do “not yet” feel they have arrived on the scene in the AFC North Division.
“We still have a losing record, but we are moving forward,” Mayfield said. “There has been a lot of change, but this is a process. For a culture to change and for a franchise to change, it is a process and it is a lot of work.
“That is why I say we have to come to work every day. You have to get better every day and each week. It is starting to come, but that is the thing. You can’t be satisfied and say, ‘Oh, we have changed it.’ No, we are not there yet.”
For the Browns to remain in the playoff race, the focus will continue to be on the daily process, something that has led to success under the direction of interim coach Gregg Williams.
“Are you going to win an argument?’” Williams asked. “‘Are you going to win a play? Are you going to win a discussion? Are you going to win a day?’
“Winning comes from doing your job every single second of every day, understating the discipline of being accountable and being focused and doing those things every day. As you get to gameday, because you have had all of these other accumulated wins throughout the week through preparation, it is not a shock when you win games. It is not a shock when you do those types of things. Now, win these close games, and then, some confidence comes in. Confidence always helps get the decided edge in winning close games. This was good.”