The Browns leave Oakland with one tough loss in overtime on the road. What happened that caused the Browns to lose?
20 Quick Hits from the Browns 45-42 loss against the Raiders in Week Four
- For reasons that seem unknown or even unanswered, the Cleveland Browns just can not win on the road.
- Yesterday afternoon’s game proved once again that there is lots of work to be done for the Browns to learn how to win consistently.
- Baker Mayfield briefly came back down to earth and made a rookie mistake against the Oakland Raiders.
- With 14 seconds remaining in regulation from the Oakland 49-yard line, Mayfield loaded up and fired a shot downfield intended for fellow rookie Antonio Callaway. Mayfield was picked off by veteran free safety Reggie Nelson at the Raiders 14-yard line, erasing any potential of escaping Oakland with a game-winning field goal in regulation.
- Speaking of Callaway, the rookie receiver had a brutal game. Callaway was targeted nine times, only catching three passes for 54 yards. Most notably, Callaway’s first target was deflected off his hands and picked off by Gareon Conley for a touchdown. A drive later, Mayfield was looking downfield for Callaway but just missed a touchdown as the ball slipped past his fingertips. It appeared that Callaway was dogging it towards the end of his route, causing the ball to be out of his reach.
- Midway through the third quarter, the Browns held a 28-14 lead. It appeared Cleveland was in the driver’s seat for a win, but for the first time all season the team could not depend on their defense.
- Starting cornerback Terrance Mitchell had a big-time first quarter for the Browns. On third and eight Mitchell broke up a pass on the sideline intended for Jordy Nelson. When Mitchell popped up, he immediately appeared to suffer a painful injury to his forearm. He was later ruled out and the entire outlook of the game was changed from then on.
- Before the injury to Mitchell, Derek Carr was 5-for-8 passing for 50 yards, only nine of those yards coming against Mitchell. After he was ruled out, Carr finished the game 30-of-50 passing for 393 yards and four touchdowns. Nelson was mostly quiet until it mattered most.
- Carr’s last drive of regulation featured a 5-of-6 showing for 53 yards and a touchdown in just 58 seconds. With the touchdown near the end of regulation, seven points would not be enough to send the game into overtime. Oakland declared to go for two points, with Carr hitting Jordy Nelson on a fade route in the corner of the end zone, tying the ball game.
- Back to the defense… they were rough.
- The Raiders came into the game on Sept. 30 scoring 13 points, 19 points, and 20 points in their first three games this season. Against the Browns, Oakland scored 45 points… the second most in week four. The Bears scored 48 points against the Buccaneers, more on that later.
- Marshawn Lynch had his best game since “retiring” in 2015. Beast mode was in effect rushing for 130 yards, averaging an impressive 6.5 yards per carry.
- The biggest mismatch of them all was Jared Cook, whom the Browns apparently had no answer. Cook had a team-best 13 targets, catching eight passes for 110 yards and two touchdowns.
- To expand on veteran tight end production, the Browns received a solid performance from Darren Fells. Fells had one reception, going for 49-yards all the way to the end zone.
- Mayfield had an okay day and that is… okay. There were times he looked like a seasoned veteran, and there were times he looked like a rookie quarterback that just practiced with the first-team offense last week. Mayfield went 21/41 for 296 yards, two touchdowns, and two interceptions. The two Mayfield interceptions were essentially meaningless as the first came off a deflection from Callaway and the second coming at the end of the game; a shot towards the end zone for a “hail mary” score. (It was not exactly a “hail mary” but Mayfield threw up a prayer).
- The most impressive throw of the day from Mayfield was to Jarvis Landry in the corner of the end zone. Mayfield threw the ball where only Landry could catch it over Rashaan Melvin. It was an even better catch by Landry, who made an acrobatic effort to stay in-bounds.
- Rookie running back Nick Chubb had the most promising performance of the game. In the first three games this season, Chubb ran for 21, 14, and six yards. Against the Raiders, Chubb and one touchdown run that went for 63-yards and another touchdown dash that went for 41-yards. The two big-time runs from Chubb were not only vital to a potential Browns win, but extremely encouraging for the rookie running back that seemed to be having a difficult time finding his groove at the professional ranks. On the two touchdown runs, Chubb looked like he did at Georgia. And that was a good thing.
- Two final quick hits before we put this depressing loss to rest.
- Greg Joseph did exactly what he came to Cleveland to do. He was successful in both field goals and both extra points. The Browns did not lose because of kicking woes this time in overtime, much like they did the last time around.
- What is the deal with Jabrill Peppers the kick returner? Peppers was an electric returner in college but seem to be lost when returning kicks in the NFL. Peppers was absolutely brutal for the Browns, taking multiple kicks out of the end zone setting up the Browns with terrible field position.
Tweets of the Day
#Browns traded a 3rd round pick for him and gave Jamie Collins a 4-year, $50 million contract.
This is the type of effort they're getting.
He has 15 tackles, 0 sacks, 0 forced fumbles and 0 INTs on the season.pic.twitter.com/8hSDjmqfO9
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) September 30, 2018
I continue to question where the hell Jamie Collins has been all season. He did have one good play, but this is just unacceptable.
There have been goalposts and Hail Marys and beer bottles involved in crazy Browns games, but I don't remember any spot reversals.
— Zac Jackson (@AkronJackson) September 30, 2018
I am not one to usually blame the refs, but man oh man.
Poor Larry Ogunjobi. A fat man touchdown taken off the board by official incompetence.
— Brent Sobleski (@brentsobleski) September 30, 2018
Again, the refs really did suck.
Mayfield may be the fastest processor/reset rookie QB I have ever seen.
— Benjamin Allbright (@AllbrightNFL) September 30, 2018
It is amazing to watch the way Mayfield plays so young. There are times he looks like a 10-year veteran.
Browns special teams. Smh.
— Tony Grossi (@TonyGrossi) October 1, 2018
Presented without comment.
Key Stats of the Game
- RB Nick Chubb: 3 carries, 105 yards, 2 touchdowns.
- RB Duke Johnson: 6 touches, 56 yards.
- FS Damarious Randall: Interception, 2 passes defended.
- DE Emmanuel Ogbah: 2 tackles, 2 passes defended.
- LB Joe Schobert: 7 tackles, tackle for loss, and a sack.
- DT Trevon Coley: 1 tackle.
- DB T.J. Carrie: 0 passes defended.
- WR Jarvis Landry: 10 targets, 4 receptions, 34 yards. (touchdown).
- KR/PR Jabrill Peppers: 4 kick returns, 16 yards. 1 punt return, 1 yard.
- DE Chris Smith: 1 tackle.
Stock Up/Stock Down
- PLAYER OF THE GAME: RB Nick Chubb. Chubb had two touchdowns and two monster runs. A really encouraging performance from the rookie.
- DE Myles Garrett. Garrett is unblockable. He had seven tackles, a tackle for loss, and a sack. He made it rough on rookie Kolton Miller.
- TE David Njoku. Njoku quietly caught five of his seven targets for 52 yards. I still would like to see him involved in the red zone.
- DB TJ Carrie: Carrie was awful. The Raiders essentially targeted the former Raider on nearly every other play.
- OL Austin Corbett. Corbett was a healthy scratch against the Raiders. Not promising for the Browns second-round pick.
- SS Jabrill Peppers. Peppers did not have one tackle or pass defended.
10 Concluding Thoughts from Around the NFL
- Chicago Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky is yet another case in the “Why you should not give up on young quarterbacks after a handful of really bad games” march. Trubisky threw for six touchdowns on 354 yards passing, completing 73 percent of his passes.
- Speaking of quarterbacks from the “Why you should not give up on young quarterbacks after a handful of really bad games” march, third-year Rams quarterback Jared Goff was magnificent against the Viking on Thursday Night. Goff went 26-of-33 for 465 yards and five touchdowns in primetime. The Rams are the most exciting team in football and watching them play football is amazing.
- Here is wishing well wishes to Cincinnati Bengals tight end, Tyler Eifert. Eifert suffered a brutal broken ankle injury, causing him to be carted off the field in an air cast. He was immediately set to have surgery last night and his season is over. He has just had an absolutely brutal career raided my injuries. As a Notre Dame fan, watching him in as a member of the Fighting Irish, he was one of the most impressive offensive threats I have ever seen. He was the Gronk of college football. He has had some big-time games in the NFL, but the injuries just keep on coming.
- How about Andrew Luck? Luck reminded everyone that he is a top-five NFL quarterback against the Texans. Luck went 40-of-62 for four touchdowns, zero interceptions, on 464 yards passing. That shoulder seems to be holding up just fine.
- This comes from ESPN’s Christian Cockcroft, “Alvin Kamara’s 41.1 PPR fantasy points on Sunday gave him 136.1 through the Saints’ first four games. That’s the most by any player through four team games in any season since 1950.” Cheers to drafting Kamara fifth overall in fantasy.
- Speaking of fantasy, I benched Tennessee Titans wide receiver, Corey Davis. Davis finished with 9 receptions, 161 yards, and a touchdown.
- Georgia rookie running backs are doing well for themselves. Chubb had two touchdowns and 110 rushing yards on just three carries against the Raiders. Fellow bulldog Sony Michel had 112 rushing yards and a touchdown on 25 carries.
- Is Blake Bortles actually really good? Bortles has 1,095 passing yards this season, a completion percentage of 4.7 percent, seven touchdowns, and only three interceptions. Not bad for a guy that spend the last four years being the butt of every quarterback joke.
- Calvin Ridley is a dude. He was my wide receiver one in the 2017 NFL Draft. In his last two games, Ridley has 11 receptions for five touchdowns and 200 receiving yards.
- Ezekiel Elliott reminded everyone that he is still a top three NFL running back. Elliott had a career-high 240 scrimmage yards against the Lions.