The Cleveland Browns begin beautiful bye by beating Ravens 24-18

Browns Celebrate TDIt’s going to be a fun bye week Browns fans. Your team beat a division rival. They beat them without a lot of gimmicks or tricks. Your team stood up and played to their capabilities and just flat out beat the Baltimore Ravens 24-18. Yes, this team has lost tons of players since last season, but they’re still the defending Super Bowl champs and your Browns beat them.

It wasn’t all cakes and pies. Browns fans got a peek at Brandon Weeden after Jason Campbell was the recipient of a pancake courtesy of Haloti Ngata. Ngata is the same player that had a lot to do with the gnashing of teeth over the Cleveland Browns trading with Pittsburgh on draft day this year, by the way. The last time the Browns traded in the division, they swapped picks with the Ravens so that they could take Ngata. The Browns took Kamerion Wimbley. But let’s not go down that road. Despite the momentary taste of Weeden, Jason Campbell came back to play and play well.

Campbell was 23 of 35 for 262 yards and three touchdowns. That’s good for a 116.6 rating. More importantly than anything, he didn’t turn the ball over. There were a few dangerous passes, but he got away with them thanks to guys like Greg Little and Davone Bess. Little was beastly with seven catches for 122 yards. His most impressive play was a 46 yard game where he made a very good run after the catch. Davone Bess, followed up a dismal week where some claimed he should be cut with two TD catches and a pivotal fourth down catch to convert a first. That was late in the fourth quarter with the Browns desperate to keep the offense on the field. Thanks to Campbell and Bess, they did.

Joe Flacco wasn’t sharp and the Browns defense had more than a little to do with it. They were a little inconsistent getting to the QB, but it’s difficult to complain about the team amassing five sacks. Chris Owens, T.J. Ward, Armonty Bryant, Jabaal Sheard, and Quentin Groves got the sacks. That’s what I mean by uneven. No Mingo. No Paul Kruger.

The defense could have folded too. They gave up a really bad touchdown to end the first half. Joe Haden and Tashaun Gipson botched the coverage handoff as Torrey Smith escaped for 46 yards with a minute to go. He caught the Flacco pass all the way to the Browns 19 and the Ravens ended up punching it in to cut the Browns’ halftime lead to 14-10. The defense could have easily wilted under their failure to end the half, but they didn’t.

And the Cleveland Browns didn’t. Another game featuring a QB not named Weeden was largely a success. I’ll save those questions for another day too about how Weeden ended up with so many opportunities this season as he has been so much worse. No matter. The Browns have a guy at the helm who does enough to keep them in games at minimum. And he proved today that he can even win the Browns a game. One against the hated Baltimore Ravens. A division rival. The team that beat the Browns 11 straight prior to today.

It’s a good day. It’s a fun bye week. You’ve earned it Browns fans. Enjoy it.

  • C-Bus Kevin

    It’s fitting that Weeden somehow managed to pass for -2 yards in this game. He barely saw the field, but he made the most of his opportunity. Sheesh.

    Alright, enough anti-Weeden business.

    I thought the defense looked great tonight. That’s what a winning performance looks like in the league today: less than 20 points allowed, 5 sacks, a takeaway, and plenty of pressure. I hope to see the same to keep Dalton scrambling in 2 weeks.

    And Cambell…he’s been a breath of fresh air. Three TDs, no picks. Plenty of timely accurate throws. Plus, he got rid of the ball quickly and moved in the pocket to escape pressure. I’d take 16 straight performances like tonight.

    Finally…Greg Little. Nicely done…now please stop with the peacock routine! You keep it going like you did tonight, you will be feared around the league, no trash talk necessary.

  • Kildawg

    I know Winners and Losers doesn’t come out until tomorrow, but Bess is a winner and Weeden is a Loser. I will add much more detail tomorrow, but this clearly needed posted tonight.

  • ch

    And let me just say most of the top teams, including PIT/BAL finish bottom half of the draft but continue to stock talent.. and have done so for six years.
    Don’t be scared that we’re not getting a top 10 pick. Embrace it. Winning feels good. It’s so clear we’re 1 QB away from being that WATCHABLE team that makes being a Browns fan great. Go browns.

  • Derek

    Campbell played very well again and made some very nice throws in very tight areas. I also thought it was ironic that he makes that underhand shovel pass that Weeden failed at miserably. A lot of credit has to go to the coaching staff. They had a very aggressive game plan and it really paid off. They showed a lot of confidence in Campbell to let him make some plays at the end of the game and not just run it up the middle three times. Kudos to Bess and Little for bouncing back.

  • BisonDeleSightings

    Campbell – decisive, accurate quarterbacking. And what stones on Chudzinski/Turner throughout the game…the playcalling at the end of the 4th quarter was very gutsy.

  • Garry_Owen

    Never before has it been this painfully obvious that the FO needs to find another backup QB. Now. Those short minutes of Weedenball, when it looked like Campbell was hurt, were almost enough for me to pack in the season.

    Get somebody. Anybody. Get Favre on the line. Tell him he’ll hold a clipboard. Let’s not be afraid of Tebow drama. Anything.

  • boomhauertjs

    Thought the same thing about that shovel pass.

  • Vindictive_Pat

    Phew, so nice to say goodbye to that 11-game losing streak to Joe Flacco. And how about Greg Little with some actual YAC? What?? I was traveling yesterday and didn’t get to watch the game… very excited to see it on Game Rewind tomorrow.

  • Vindictive_Pat

    Surely there’s a McCown or McNown out there that we could get?

  • porckchop

    I couldn’t help but hope that at some point after a sack when the defense was coming off the field Horton rallied the D by going Rocky IV Duke; “They’re just men! They’re not a MACHINE! They’re not a MACHINE!”
    Of course on the other side line that commie monster Harbaugh is screaming something at Flacco about crushing the Brownies and Flacco mutters “They are like iron.”
    Really life is good when you can translate any events into scenes from the Rocky movies. Life is great when you can do it during a Browns win.

  • saggy

    I laughed out loud at that negative-yards pass. I said “only weeden could do that.”

  • saggy

    If he dies, he dies.

  • saggy

    They should go get Foles. Oh wait – too late…

  • dimoko

    Hell of a game, lots of fun to watch. It is nice to see us step up and win against a division rival with no gimmicks or no tricks. Although chuck booms was complaining about the pooch kick this morning…but he complains about everything so who cares.

  • Garry_Owen

    We must break them.


    Under this scenario, we should probably have the Ravens all take drug tests, too.

  • The_Matt_Of_Akron

    except that ended with:
    “During this fight, I’ve seen a lot of changing, in the way you feel
    about me, and in the way I feel about you. In here, there were two guys
    killing each other, but I guess that’s better than twenty million. I
    guess what I’m trying to say, is that if I can change, and you can
    change, everybody can change!”

    The way I feel about the Ravens is not changing.

  • Foghorn Leghorn

    Hey, sort of a sidenote, but you brought up the Steelers trade. Steelers took Shamarko Thomas with that pick, correct? According to his stats he has played 8 games, started 2, and has 26 tackles, no picks, no sacks. Anyone know if that kid is going to haunt us like Ngata? His stats dont scare me, but I obviously dont watch Steelers games.

  • Kildawg

    Looks like that trade cost PIT a high 3rd round pick in a supposedly deeper draft though. Praise the genius of Joe Banner!

  • mgbode

    NE just shredded that secondary. Pitt has had a good yds/game but alot of that due to their run defense being porous(31st only ahead of JAX). They are 20th in QBrating against.

    So, their entire defense has been bad, which makes it really hard to evaluate a single rookie, who happens to be a backup and doesn’t play all the time.

    At this point, cannot really read much into anything because Clark & Polamalu are the strength of their bad defense (when healthy). So, even the fact that he cannot crack the starting lineup of a bad defense isn’t galling.