The Cleveland Browns won their third straight game, defeating the Miami Dolphins by a final score of 41-24 to improve to 5-6 on the season. It was an incredible first half for the Browns, followed by a frustrating third quarter that let Miami get back into it for a bit. Let’s get to the recap.
Right from the get go, the Browns’ offense was off to a hot start, moving downfield after some poor tackling by the Dolphins. In the red zone, QB Baker Mayfield found WR Jarvis Landry for a 7-yard touchdown pass on 3rd-and-2 to give Cleveland a 7-0 lead.
On the ensuing kickoff, K Austin Seibert kicked it out of bounds, giving Miami good starting field position at the 40. Miami went backwards, though, including when they tried to quick snap the Browns on third down and it was a disaster, as Fitzpatrick was heavily blitzed and stripped by DL Sheldon Richardson (although Fitzpatrick recovered).
Cleveland was rolling on their second drive, but then there was a miscommunication on a 2nd-and-1 as C JC Tretter snapped the ball when Mayfield wasn’t looking, resulting in a loss of 19 yards and effectively ending the drive. Miami went three-and-out, and Cleveland’s offensive success continued. After a few good runs by Chubb, Mayfield found WR Odell Beckham wide open for a 35-yard touchdown to make it a 14-0 game:
The Dolphins’ offense finally picked up a first down, but couldn’t get more. On top of that, they tried a fake punt that wasn’t even close to converting. With Cleveland’s next possession, Mayfield found Landry for the second time in the game, this time from 5 yards out, for a touchdown to make it a 21-0 game in the second quarter.
Miami finally started converting some first downs on their next drive, but once they got into scoring range, QB Ryan Fitzpatrick had his pass to WR Albert Wilson go off the receiver and picked off by LB Joe Schobert:
Inside of two minutes, there was a bizarre situation in which the booth initiated a defensive pass interference review on a play where no one thought the call would be overturned. It was, putting the ball at 1st-and-goal at the 6 yard line. One play later, RB Kareem Hunt took it around the edge for a touchdown to make it a 28-0 game:
Cleveland missed a couple of interceptions in the final moments of the half, allowing the Dolphins to clock it with one second left and kick a 36-yard field goal to make it 28-3 at the intermission.
Miami got the ball coming out of the first half and went three-and-out. The Browns picked up a first down after two nice plays, but then Mayfield’s pass to Beckham on a quick hitter was really far behind him. Beckham barely got a hand on it, and Dolphins CB Ryan Lewis came away with the interception near midfield. Miami capitalized, driving down the field until Fitzpatrick found TE Mike Gesicki for an 11-yard touchdown to make it a 28-10 game, still early in the third quarter.
Cleveland ate some clock on their next drive to get into scoring range. But then Mayfield took a seven-yard sack on third down, and Seibert’s 46-yard field goal attempt with 4:04 left in the third quarter was no good. Once again, the Dolphins drove down the field, this time fairly quickly. The drive was extended after a personal foul penalty appeared to be called on LB Mack Wilson, when he helmet accidentally made contact with an intended receiver. On 3rd-and-goal, Fitzpatrick scrambled and took it up the middle for an 8-yard touchdown, closing the Browns’ lead to 28-17 to end the third quarter.
Cleveland used up a few minutes of clock to begin the fourth quarter, but the drive stalled after two of Mayfield’s passes on first and third down were way overthrown. Seibert came in and was good from 40 yards out, making it a 31-17 game with 11:21 left in the game. The Dolphins next drive was stopped after a sack from CB T.J. Carrie, leading to a punt.
Cleveland then had their best drive of the half, as Landry made a couple of great catches to improve upon his best game of the season. Mayfield’s end zone pass on third down to WR Rashard Higgins was just barely tipped by the defense, so the Browns settled for a 26-yard field goal by Seibert to make it a 34-17 game with 6:51 to go. On third down of the next drive, with Miami backed up, Fitzpatrick’s frantic pass was picked off by Schobert, his second of the game.
A few plays later, Chubb punched it in from 5 yards out, giving the Browns a 41-17 lead. In the final moments, Fitzpatrick found WR Allen Hurns for a wide open touchdown after he had all day to throw, finishing the game off at 41-24.
- QB Baker Mayfield: 24-of-34 for 327 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT.
- RB Nick Chubb: 21 carries, 106 yards, 1 TD. 3 catches, 58 yards (4 targets).
- RB Kareem Hunt: 8 carries, 37 yards, 1 TD. 2 catches, 9 yards (3 targets).
- WR Odell Beckham: 6 catches, 84 yards (8 targets). 1 TD.
- WR Jarvis Landry: 10 catches, 148 yards (13 targets). 2 TD.
- LB Joe Schobert: 2 interceptions.
- DL Sheldon Richardson: 2 sacks.