For the first time in 13 years, the Cleveland Browns have a winning season. For context, a kid born in 2007 would be in middle school or starting high school right now — it’s been that long. Contributing to a first-half domination, this Browns offense looked better than ever against the Tennessee Titans.
Let’s get into this offensive explosion.
The Browns offense came out of the gate very aggressive with the football. The offense looks great and Baker Mayfield looked poised and calm in the pocket, delivering strikes off of play-action.
Nick Chubb complimented the play-action with tough runs, and before we knew it, the offense was in the red zone. Unfortunately, they stall in the red zone after Donovan Peoples-Jones dropped a pass in the end zone and settle for a field goal, 3-0.
The Titans offense begin their first drive, set up around midfield after a catch-and-run by Corey Davis. The Titans stall at midfield after a failed fourth down attempt, and the Browns begin again. They continued with the aggressive approach and move into the redzone once more. After a ridiculous catch by Rashard Higgins, the offense finishes the drive with a Mayfield pass to Jarvis Landry for the touchdown, 10-0. The following Titans drive doesn’t last long, as Derrick Henry fumbled the football and the defense gives the offense great field position for another scoring drive.
The Browns offense begin another aggressive drive going into the second quarter.
The second quarter begins on the 1-yard line and Mayfield threw his second touchdown pass to Kendall Lamm, an offensive lineman! Gotta love the trickery, and the score moves to 17-0.
The Titans’ next drive is up-tempo and quick to try and cut the lead quickly. Ryan Tannehill spreads the football around, and after a ridiculous 40-yard grab by A.J. Brown, the drive is capped off with a touchdown catch by Davis, 17-7.
The Browns offense continues to be aggressive and Peoples-Jones makes up for his end zone drop with a 75-yard touchdown catch-and-run to make the score 24-7, giving Mayfield his third passing touchdown in the first half.
The Browns defense continues to stifle the Titans offense and force a three-and-out, and once again, the Browns offense begins their march down the field for a fifth time. Kareem Hunt receives more carries to balance out the offense, but it’s the Baker Mayfield Show in the first half. After scrambling for a first down, Mayfield throws his fourth touchdown pass to Higgins and the score moves to 31-7.
This got ugly for the Titans, fast.
Another three-and-out and the Browns offense begins their sixth drive of the first half. The Browns continue being aggressive, and with one minute left, they make it to the red zone… again. They cap off the drive with a 1-yard touchdown run by Chubb to make the score 38-7, and that completes the first half.
My goodness, what a bloodbath.
The Titans make great second-half adjustments and come out matching the Browns’ first-half aggressiveness.
Henry rushes for a first down, followed by Davis creating another big play for 45 yards as the Titans move into the red zone. Tannehill throws a touchdown pass to MyCole Pruitt and the Titans score in three total plays, but fail the two-point conversion, 38-14.
The Browns offense begins by running out the clock with Chubb, Hunt, and a scramble by Mayfield, but go three-and-out and punt back to Tennessee. The Browns defense continues to stuff Henry so Tannehill continues to spread the football around. Brown catches another pass in the red zone but fumbles it; however, the defense fails to recover and Pruitt picks it up and scores again… two back-to-back scores and a two-point conversion in the third quarter is not what the defense expected after the first half.
The Browns switch back to their aggressive passing approach and David Njoku and Austin Hooper become the main recipients, complimented by a big run by Chubb. The offense stalls in the red zone and resort to a field goal, making the score 41-21.
The Titans offense move down the field but fall short of making the red zone thanks to a sack by Larry Ogunjobi. Unfortunately, the defense gets called for holding and the Titans start anew. The quarter ends with the defense backed against their end zone once again.
The first play of the fourth quarter is an interception credited to M.J. Stewart off a bobbled pass by Adam Humphries. The Browns offense begins their clock-draining drives to seal the game, and eat as much time as possible before punting it back to the Titans.
The defense stepped up and forced a three-and-out thanks to a sack by Myles Garrett and the Browns continue to drain the clock. Eventually, the Browns punt away again and the Titans continue the aggressive attempt at a comeback.
Another aggressive drive ends in a touchdown for the Titans with less than two minutes left in the game, 41-28. The Titans use all their timeouts, but on fourth down, the Browns fumble the football and the Titans score one more time to make the score a respectable 41-35 before the end of regulation.
What a game.
One of Mayfield’s best games of his career against a good team, and the Browns did their job in the second half and drained the clock, holding Henry to only 60 rushing yards to give their offense more chances to score and drain clock.
Couldn’t be more impressed, and the future looks bright in Cleveland.
(Featured Image Credit: ClevelandBrowns.com)