Cleveland has somehow played three overtime games in five weeks, and they’ve had the ultimate hat trick: a tie, a loss, and now...A VICTORY! The Browns knuckled a kick through the uprights to end overtime, beating the Ravens 12-9 and improving to 2-2-1 on the season.
The Browns’ defense forced a punt on a short field on the Ravens’ first drive of the game. Cleveland got off to a good start with their first two plays, but then on a 3rd-and-6, QB Baker Mayfield was picked off by CB Tavon Young after WR Rashard Higgins appeared to break off his route at the wrong time. That led to a 44-yard field goal by K Justin Tucker to give the Ravens a 3-0 lead.
Cleveland moved the ball to the 35 yard line on their second drive, but on 3rd-and-8, S Eric Weddle shot through the line unblocked to sack Mayfield and take Cleveland out of field goal range. Special teams were a detriment to the Browns right away in the first half. A hold on a return forced Cleveland’s next possession to start backed up in their own territory. A quick three-and-out led to a punt, which saw another flag at the line on a hold, so P Britton Colquitt had to punt from the back of the end zone. That set the Ravens’ next drive up at midfield.
Baltimore kept moving the chains until they got into a goal-to-go situation. On 2nd-and-goal from the 2 yard line, QB Joe Flacco playfaked and tried to throw a pass, but DE Emmanuel Ogbah tipped the pass and it fluttered to the arms of CB Denzel Ward!
The turnover prevented points, but Cleveland started their drive at the 3 yard line. A quick 26-yard pass to TE Seth DeValve got Cleveland out of danger zone. The drive quickly stalled after that, though. Both teams kept trading punts, with Baltimore always having the edge in field position. Things changed at the two-minute warning.
Mayfield got consecutive pass plays of 19 and 24 yards to TE David Njoku. The drive was capped off with a 19-yard touchdown strike to Higgins, giving the Browns a 6-3 lead with 0:40 to go in the half...but K Greg Joseph missed the extra point.
Baltimore, with all three of their timeouts to work with, got in range for a 48-yard field goal attempt for Tucker, but the Browns blocked it! Ward had his second big play of the half with the block, keeping it a 6-3 game at the half.
The Browns’ opening drive of the second half had some promise, but Njoku couldn’t haul in a third down pass that was high but hit him in the hands. On Baltimore’s next drive, RB Javorius Allen fumbled with DT Trevon Coley recovering in Baltimore territory. Passes of 15 and 26 yards to WR Jarvis Landry and Higgins gave the Browns a 1st-and-goal situation from the 6 yard line. They couldn’t get any closer, though, and Joseph kicked a field goal from 35 yards out to put the Browns up 9-3 mid-way through the third quarter.
Baltimore put together a 13 play drive taking up nearly 7 minutes of clock to close out the third quarter, but the Browns’ defense didn’t break, only yielding a 25-yard field goal to stay on top 9-6.
Cleveland’s next drive saw a highlight-reel run by Mayfield on third down, but a holding penalty brought it back. A third down catch-and-run by Njoku just fell short of a first down, but the punt allowed the Browns to pin Baltimore back at their 12 yard line. Cleveland’s defense forced a punt, and the offense had an opportunity to put together a drive to give them a cushion. Instead, Mayfield had a rare misfire to an open Landry on a second down pass, and then WR Antonio Callaway dropped a third down pass that was right in his hands.
The Browns’ defense forced another punt, getting the ball at their own 14 yard line with 7:28 to go in the game. Mayfield took about three minutes off the clock, but on third down, had his pass tipped for an incompletion. On the punt, with 4:29 to go, the Ravens had their first penalty of the game (that was accepted on them).
The penalty didn’t matter. Within a few plays, Baltimore completed passes to get into field goal range. The defense prevented the touchdown, but Tucker tied it at 9-9 with a 32-yard field goal with 0:52 to go and two timeouts.
Landry had a big catch to get to the 37 yard line, but he made the mistake of fighting for yards instead of getting out of bounds. That helped lead to Cleveland trying a 55-yard field goal, but Joseph missed it, sending the game to overtime.
Cleveland won the coin toss to possess the ball first in overtime. Unfortunately, the offense went three-and-out. Colquitt had his best punt of the game, and coupled with a penalty, forced Baltimore to begin at the 7 yard line. The Ravens drove close to midfield, but the defense held on third down to force a punt. Mayfield got the ball back at the 14 yard line with 4:20 to go.
The first play was a huge one — a last-second dumpoff in the flat to Landry, who ran for 27 yards. A roughing the passer penalty added 15 more yards to put the ball 44 yards away from the end zone. Cleveland eventually decided to pass on a 57-yard field goal to go for it on 4th-and-5. Landry was leveled on the play, but no flag was thrown as the officials said the attempted pass was uncatchable.
The defense responded with a three-and-out, giving the offense another rack at it. This time, Cleveland took over at the 16 yard line, now with 2:57 to go and 2 timeouts. The first play was horrible — a reverse to WR Rod Streater that went for a loss of 11 yards, now facing 2nd-and-21 at the 5 yard line.
A 13-yard scramble by Mayfield sent it to the 2-minute warning, now facing a 3rd-and-8 from the 18 yard line. A conversion would keep Cleveland alive for either a win or a tie, but being shy of the marker means you’re playing for a tie or a loss. Out of no where, Mayfield found WR Derrick Willies for a gain of 39 yards! That put the ball at the Ravens’ 43 yard line with 1:16 to go.
The handoff to RB Duke Johnson went for 15 yards to the 28 yard line. Johnson got 5 more yards and then 4 yards on consecutive carries, setting Joseph up at the 19 yard line with 0:06 to go for the game-winning attempt from 37 yards...and IT WAS UGLY AND SHORT BUT SOMEHOW WENT IN!
It’s the first Browns win on a Sunday since December 2015!
- QB Baker Mayfield: 25-of-43 for 342 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT. 2 rushes, 23 yards.
- RB Carlos Hyde: 17 carries, 63 yards. catches, 14 yards (3 targets).
- WR Jarvis Landry: 5 catches, 69 yards (10 targets).
- WR Rashard Higgins: 3 catches, 66 yards (4 targets). 1 touchdown.
- WR Derrick Willies: 3 catches, 61 yards (5 targets).
- LB Jamie Collins: 12 tackles, 1 sack.
- DE Myles Garrett: 2 tackles, 0.5 sack.
- CB Denzel Ward: 5 tackles, 1 interception, 1 blocked field goal.