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The news that keeps us Onward On!
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The news that keeps us Onward On!

The Carroll News

The news that keeps us Onward On!

The Carroll News

Browns continue to falter with injuries

Erik Drost, Wikimedia Commons
Cleveland is forced to fight injuries in the midst of tough matchups.

The Cleveland Browns came into Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos with a record of 7-3 on the heels of two thrilling wins against their division rivals, the Ravens and Steelers. However, the Broncos also came into Sunday’s game red hot. Before Sunday’s game, the Broncos had won four straight games despite starting the season with a record of 1-5. Browns quarterback Dorian-Thompson Robinson (DTR) looked to improve on an impressive final drive against the Steelers. At the same time, his Broncos counterpart, Russell Wilson, was focused on continuing to right the ship of Denver’s season.

Right from the start, it was clear that Broncos’ coach Sean Payton had a solid game plan to go against a Browns defense that has been stellar all season long. On their first possession of the game, Wilson led a drive down the field that was assisted by a pass interference penalty on Browns’ defensive back Greg Newsome. Wilson then threw a pass to Courtland Sutton near the goal line and Samaje Perine finished the drive off with a short touchdown run.

The Browns, however, did not have the same success on offense early in the game. Cleveland failed to convert a fourth down despite a Herculean effort by receiver Cedric Tillman to reach the marker, followed by a punt on their next possession.

Late in the first quarter, the Broncos once again marched down the field, with big runs that gashed through the Browns’ defense. On this possession, Wilson ended up running in for another short touchdown after keeping the ball on a read option play.

Despite a rough start, the Browns found their rhythm in the second quarter. DTR settled into the game and was able to complete passes down the field and use his athleticism to make plays with his feet. Browns running backs Jerome Ford and Kareem Hunt were also running the ball well with the offensive line opening holes for them to run.

The Browns had a long drive in the second quarter but had to settle for a field goal to make the score 14-3; their defense stopped Wilson and the Broncos on the following possession. The Browns were then again able to march down the field, but had to settle for a field goal inside the 15-yard line after Elijah Moore failed to bring down a pass in the corner of the endzone. Dustin Hopkins’ second field goal left the score at 14-6 in favor of the Broncos at half.

The Browns came out of the locker room with momentum, stopped Denver on defense, and got the ball back with a chance to drive down the field and tie the game. DTR went on to have arguably his best drive of the season, confidently hitting David Njoku for a long first down, capping it off with a throw off his back foot to tight end Harrison Bryant for a two yard touchdown. However, the Browns went for a two-point conversion on the next play, when a perfectly placed ball fell right through the hands of a wide open Amari Cooper. The Browns defense stood tall once again on the following drive, holding Denver to a field goal to make the score at 17-12.

However, the next Browns possession was when things turned for the worse. While scrambling in the back field on a long turn down, Broncos’ linebacker Baron Browning delivered a vicious hit to DTR, knocking him out of the game with a concussion. Although the Browns were given a first down due to a roughing the passer penalty on Denver, Browning’s hit seemed to suck the life out of the Browns’ offense.

The Browns would end up punting and Wilson came down the other end of the field and delivered a touchdown pass to Adam Trautman to make the score 23-12. The Browns could not muster up any offense for the remainder of the game and Denver would hold on to their lead, kicking one more field goal in the fourth quarter to make the final score 27-12.

The Browns left Denver banged up and bruised. Along with DTR, star receiver Cooper was knocked out of the game after a hit to his ribs. Additionally the face of the Browns’ franchise, Myles Garrett, played most of the second half with noticeable pain in his shoulder and was seen wearing a sling on his arm after the game. Coach Kevin Stefanski did say however that he expects both Cooper and Garrett to be available for this coming Sunday’s game. Having already lost key pieces such as Nick Chubb and Deshaun Watson for the season, the Browns cannot afford to lose any more of their star players.

The Browns now sit at 7-4 and will spend the week together in Los Angeles before having a chance to bounce back against the 5-6 Rams.

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