Stop me if you have heard this one before: The Cleveland Browns lost again. In the midst of a snowy Christmas Eve, the Browns fell to the Chicago Bears, 20-3, which drops the Browns to 1-30 in the Hue Jackson era, and one step closer to the winless parade at the climax of an 0-16 season.
The Browns continually made mistake after mistake, and seemed more like a team interested in the offseason than what was in front of them on Sunday.
The beginning of the game saw a slow start in the snow for both teams. The Browns fell behind 6-0 after a nine-play Bears drive ended in a touchdown, this one from Jordan Howard from two yards out with the extra point blocked by Carl Nassib. The teams exchanged punts for much of the remainder of the first half. The Browns had one lengthy drive that ended in a Kizer interception in the end zone intended for Josh Gordon. Just before half, Kizer hit Ricardo Louis for 35 yards to set up the Browns lone score, a 48-yard field goal that Zane Gonzalez snuck just over the crossbar to make it 6-3 Bears at the half.
The second half saw a swing in momentum the Browns couldn’t overcome. On the Bears’ first play from scrimmage, Myles Garrett intercepted a tipped Mitchell Trubisky pass and returned it 37 yards for a touchdown. As the Browns were celebrating their lead, they realized a flag was thrown for Carl Nassib aligning offside and wiping out the game changing play. The Bears then went 60 yards in four plays to make the score 13-3 Chicago. The Bears would tack on another touchdown to make the score 20-3.
The Browns and Bears went for near identical total yard counts, with the Bears narrowly out-gaining the Browns 258-253. The difference was the Browns’ three giveaways while the Bears didn’t turn the ball over once. The three turnovers brings the Browns to -28 on the season, two shy of the NFL record. Kizer again struggled for the most part, missing several key opportunities in the downfield passing game, and looking generally uncomfortable again within the Browns’ coach Hue Jackson’s system. He finished 18-of-36 for 182 yards with two interceptions. Trubisky led the Bears in a clean performance going 14-of-23 for 193 yards and one rushing touchdown.
DeShone Kizer second quarter interception
Ricardo Louis 35-yard catch
Myles Garrett interception return (nullified due to penalty)
Jordan Howard 16 yard touchdown run
Browns Top Performers
Duke Johnson: 7 catches, 81 yards
James Burgess: 9 tackles, 1 sack, 3 TFL
Larry Ogunjobi: 4 tackles, 1 sack, 2 TFL
On to the next one
The Browns close the season at Pittburgh next week in search of avoiding the NFL’s first winless season since the 2008 Detroit Lions. The game is slated for a 1 p.m. kickoff on New Year’s Eve.