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Instant Recap: Browns Lose to Redskins 24-23

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Browns lost to the Washington Redskins by a final score of 24-23. Here are some quick hitter observations from the game:

  • Who Won the QB Derby? Nobody. In front of a national audience, head coach Mike Pettine rotated both QB Brian Hoyer and QB Johnny Manziel into the game, only to see zero offensive production in the first half. The production in the second half wasn't the greatest either, and then finally, Manziel got a dump off touchdown pass to RB Dion Lewis for Cleveland's first touchdown of the preseason.

    Based on today's game, my firm opinion is that Hoyer is still in the lead. The decision-making is better for Hoyer than Manziel right now, and I think committing consistent reps to Hoyer will lead to improved results.


  • Offensive Notes: Outside of the quarterback competition, there wasn't much to speak about offensively. The first-team offensive line had miscues early. The wide receivers and tight ends either dropped passes, fumbled the ball, couldn't make the difficult catches, or were out of sync with the quarterback. The running backs were adequate at least -- Lewis had the touchdown, Ben Tate had 10 carries for 51 yards, and Terrance West had 8 carries for 31 yards.

  • Defensive Notes: The Browns were down six defensive backs due to injury, but the defense as a whole played very well. On the Redskins' first four possessions, Cleveland got a fumble recovery by ILB Craig Robertson, interception by CB Joe Haden, a four-down goal line stand for a turnover on downs, and an interception by FS Tashaun Gipson.

  • Colt McCoy Says Hello: Just when we thought our quarterback situation was bleak in Cleveland, former Browns QB Colt McCoy did us a solid: right after Manziel's touchdown pass to Lewis in the fourth quarter, McCoy came in and threw a pick six to S Jim Leonhard, giving Cleveland a 17-14 lead.
  • Brownies: WR Josh Gordon did not look to have his head in the game, and one has to wonder if that's why he still saw action in the fourth quarter. ... K Billy Cundiff missed a potential go-ahead field goal after a drive by QB Connor Shaw, but it was from 54 yards out. ... DE Armonty Bryant had another solid game. ... The preseason trend of officials throwing a ton of flags on defensive backs continued. ... One person who we know won't be around very much longer is CB Royce Adams, who was burned twice for touchdowns and just allowed receivers to go around him for easy catches. ... The Browns got a Hail Mary touchdown pass from Shaw to end the game, but they did not convert the two-point conversion for the win.

We'll have our full review of the game up over the next few days, but let us know what your instant reaction to the game was.