The Browns were picked apart by the QB Derek Carr to WR Amani Cooper combination on the first drive of the game, but the defense held the Raiders to a 23-yard field goal to make it a 3-0 game. In the second quarter, after the defense had forced a three-and-out, the Browns' special teams unit came hard after the punt but ended up roughing the punter. Oakland responded with a 40-yard connection from Carr to Cooper, eventually leading to a 3-yard touchdown pass to WR Andre Holmes. The Raiders led 10-0 mid-way through the second quarter.
Cleveland finally put together their first successful offensive drive of the game in the closing moments of the first half. A 17-yard run by RB Isaiah Crowell gave Cleveland the ball with a 1st-and-goal at the 1 yard line, but they couldn't get in on three attempts. They were going to go for it on fourth down, but a false start penalty convinced them to try a a field goal instead to cut the Raiders' lead to 10-3 with 1:44 left in the half.
The problem was that Oakland started their two-minute drive with a 20-yard run by RB Latavius Murray, and then a 36-yard completion to WR Seth Roberts. A few plays later, Carr hit Robers for a 13-yard touchdown. Oakland led 17-3 at the half.
Cleveland got the ball to begin the third quarter, but could do nothing with it. On the Raiders' first run of the second half, Murray busted free for a 54-yard run, setting up a 35-yard field goal for the Raiders and giving them a 20-3 lead. Cleveland went into pass-heavy mode on their next drive. Even though the drive was a little ugly, QB Josh McCown found TE Gary Barnidge on a flag route for a 28-yard touchdown near the end of the third quarter, cutting the lead to 20-10.
The Browns' defense couldn't answer the call, though, giving up a 55-yard catch-and-run completion to FB Marcel Reece after both of Cleveland's safeties missed the tackle. Right at the start of the fourth quarter, Murray punched it in from 6 yards out, putting the Raiders up 27-10. A comeback attempt looked unfathomable for Cleveland, but they quickly got in range for a 41-yard field goal attempt by K Travis Coons, which he hit to make it a 27-13 game with 10:57 to go.
The Raiders made their first big mistake on their ensuing drive. Facing a 3rd-and-11, Carr hit Cooper on a quick slant, but ILB Christian Kirksey forced a fumble with DL John Hughes recovering. Several plays later, McCown hit WR Travis Benjamin for a 4-yard touchdown pass, closing the gap to 27-20 with 6:28 to play. The Browns' defense forced a three-and-out and Oakland punted. The Browns would have had the ball close to midfield with 4:00 to go, but Benjamin had to run up for a fair catch and booted the punt, allowing the Raiders to recover.
Cleveland's defense forced another three-and-out, but a Raiders punt pinned the Browns back at the 2 yard line with 2:26 to play and 2 timeouts. The Browns moved the ball to the 29-yard line with 0:49 to go, facing a 2nd-and-8. McCown took a sack, forcing Cleveland to burn their final timeout. On 3rd-and-14 from the 35-yard line, McCown looked to the left and then came back to his right with a throw as he was facing pressure. Benjamin was somewhat open in cover-2 coverage, but the ball was underthrown and late as S Charles Woodson made the interception to seal the victory.
The Browns fall to 1-2 and have a road trip to San Diego on deck.
- QB Josh McCown: 28-of-49 for 341 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
- RB Isaiah Crowell: 10 carries, 36 yards.
- RB Duke Johnson: 4 carries, 3 yards. 6 catches, 32 yards.
- WR Brian Hartline: 5 catches, 96 yards.
- WR Travis Benjamin: 4 catches, 45 yards, 1 TD. 1 fumble (punt).
- TE Gary Barnidge: 6 catches, 105 yards, 1 TD.
- The Browns' defense didn't register a sack. McCown was sacked 5 times.