Five more games until perfection.
The Cleveland Browns fell to 0-11 on the season with another lifeless performance against the Pittsburgh Steelers, losing by a score of 24-9.
In his first work since being benched against the Ravens, QB Cody Kessler made the effort to go downfield more. On the first drive, he was picked off looking for WR Corey Coleman deep, and other times in the first half, he was sacked after holding the ball for way too long.
Pittsburgh’s first two drives each took up over nine minutes of game clock, but they had to settle for 32- and 33-yard field goals to go up 6-0. The Steelers were in scoring range again in the final seconds of the first half, but two penalties on Browns cornerbacks gave Pittsburgh untimed downs. Rather than kick the field goal, they kept going for it. Eventually, they punched it in from one yard out with RB Le’Veon Bell and then got the two-point conversion to take a 14-0 halftime lead.
The Steelers got the ball in the second half, and went three-and-out for their first punt of the game. Cleveland then got big completions on third- and fourth-down to RB Duke Johnson (for 22 yards) and WR Terrelle Pryor (for 26 yards) to get the ball down to the 1 yard line. RB Isaiah Crowell was blown up for a loss of two yards and then QB Cody Kessler was sacked for a loss of five yards. After not converting on third down, Hue Jackson opted to kick the 22-yard field goal to get on the board to make it a 14-3 deficit.
4th and 9?— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) November 20, 2016
Throw it up to @TerrellePryor. https://t.co/4PygcxzCDA
The Steelers put together another methodical drive, finishing it with a 22-yard field goal, to go up 17-3 heading to the final quarter of play.
Kessler was knocked out of the game with a concussion, forcing QB Josh McCown into action. He directed a drive of pass plays only, and although it was ugly, it ended with a 14-yard touchdown pass to TE Gary Barnidge to make it a 17-9 game. The extra point was no good, a trend that ran rampant across the NFL in Week 11.
BIG PLAY BARNIDGE! https://t.co/Ns1I9jCOch— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) November 20, 2016
Despite how much Pittsburgh controlled the game, Cleveland had a shot at tying the game in the final minutes. Instead, McCown was strip+sacked in his own end zone, leading to a defensive touchdown for the Steelers to put them up 24-9. That’s how the game finished.
Nothing quite like a big man TD. https://t.co/Vcq8LE8CCp— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 20, 2016
- QB Cody Kessler: 7-of-14 for 128 yards, 1 INT.
- QB Josh McCown: 14-of-27 for 118 yards, 1 TD.
- RB Isaiah Crowell: 8 carries, 10 yards. 5 catches, 13 yards.
- WR Terrelle Pryor: 5 catches, 97 yards.
- TE Gary Barnidge: 2 catches, 23 yards, 1 TD.
- The Browns allowed 7 sacks to a team that entered the game with 13 total sacks on the year.
- Pittsburgh dominated time of possession more so than the final numbers indicate.