The Browns received the ball first, and a penalty on the kickoff set them back to the 11 yard line. Head coach Freddie Kitchens was going to give QB Baker Mayfield one series, but to operate out of the two-minute drill and a hurry up offense. Mayfield’s first pass fell incomplete and wide of WR Derrick Willies, but he didn’t miss after that. Mayfield finished the drive 5-of-6 for 77 yards, capping the drive with a 24-yard dime to WR Rashard Higgins:
The Browns’ first-team defense (those who were playing) also did a good job, especially DE Myles Garrett, who could not be contained. The offense got a bit ugly once QB Drew Stanton entered the game. Then, the Redskins got a big pass interference penalty on third down when S Eric Murray committed pass interference. A few plays later, QB Case Keenum found a wide open WR Robert Davis for a 46-yard touchdown. Two rookies — CB Greedy Williams and S Sheldrick Redwine — had a miscommunication where one of them was playing the wrong coverage.
With the score tied 7-7, the Browns tried to strike back after Stanton found Higgins for a catch-and-run of 38 yards to the 2 yard line. Cleveland thought they had a touchdown to WR Antonio Callaway, who caught a tipped pass with a toe tap in the end zone. Officials ruled it incomplete, but Kitchens challenged the ruling. The officials didn’t overturn it, and on 4th-and-goal from the 1 yard line, RB Dontrell Hilliard fumbled.
Part-way into the second quarter, CB Terrance Mitchell forced a fumble from behind after a great 32-yard pass by QB Dwayne Haskins. Some players just have a gift of poking the ball out, and Mitchell is one of those guys.
Our !— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) August 9, 2019
Terrance Mitchell forces it out and Jermaine Whitehead jumps on it pic.twitter.com/fRmem6xHKS
Cleveland’s offense couldn’t muster anything, but a big story on the next drive came when LB Mack Wilson dropped back and intercepted a pass by the sideline before returning it 40 yards for a touchdown. That is noteworthy because Wilson already has two pick sixes in camp, so this is really starting to become a trend with him.
K Greg Joseph added a 43-yard field goal to give the Browns a 17-7 lead at the half. The Redskins got a 35-yard field goal during the third quarter which was otherwise quiet. Cleveland did have a drive where WR Ishmael Hyman was about to score, but then he switched the football to his other arm to try stiff arming a defender and ended up fumbling.
The start of the fourth quarter was highlighted again with a defensive play by Wilson, as he jumped up to make an athletic interception, his second of the game:
Cleveland wasn’t done yet. QB David Blough, the fourth quarterback of the game for the Browns, found WR D.J. Montgomery for an 11-yard touchdown pass with just over four minutes to play, giving the Browns a 24-10 lead.
After the defense forced a stop, it was time for WR Damon Sheehy-Guiseppi to get a shot at returning the punt. He didn’t disappoint, returning it 86 yards for a touchdown. Knowing his story, it felt so special, and the entire team seemed to come out from the bench and jump on top of him to celebrate.
The only downside was that Joseph missed the extra point off the upright, keeping it a 30-10 game. Overall, for the game, Cleveland had some mistakes to clean up, but it’s always good when you have players shining in all three phases of the game.
- QB Baker Mayfield: 5-of-6 for 77 yards, 1 TD.
- RB Dontrell Hilliard: 9 carries, 19 yards. 3 catches, 34 yards (6 targets).
- WR Rashard Higgins: 5 catches, 98 yards (6 targets). 1 TD.
- LB Mack Wilson: 3 tackles (3 combined). 2 interceptions, 1 TD.
- CB Greedy Williams: 2 tackles (2 combined). 1 interception.