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Raiders-Browns Final Score: Cleveland's Comeback Attempt Falls Short, Lose 27-20

Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Browns lost to the Oakland Raiders by a final score of 27-20 in a game they were dominated in for more than half the game before attempting to stage a last-second comeback.

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.

Quick Stats

  • 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.