CINCINNATI — A big second half was crucial for the Browns in their quest to sweep the Cincinnati Bengals Sunday for the first time since 2002.
After two 1st quarter interceptions by Joe Haden, including an interception returned for a touchdown, the Browns led 13-0. It’s the first pick-six for Haden and first multi-interception game of his career.
But the Bengals came alive in the 2nd quarter. Andy Dalton threw 2 touchdown passes, then the Bengals special teams deflected a Spencer Lanning punt, blocked another Browns punt and returned it for a touchdown to give then Bengals a 21-13 lead.
Then Chris Ogbonnaya fumbled the ball inside Cleveland territory. Cincinnati recovered and returned it for a TD to make it a 28-13 game.
Before the half, the Bengals added a field goal to extend their lead to 31-13. The 31-point 2nd quarter is a franchise record for points scored in one quarter play for Cincinnati.
With 9:29 left in the 3rd quarter, Josh Gordon took a 74-yard pass from Campbell to the end zone to add another TD to the board, 31-20, but the Bengals kept the heat coming in the 4th quarter.
Alex Smith took a 2-yard pass from Andy Dalton to extend the lead and Mike Nugent added a FG for good measure.
The Bengals took the win in the battle of Ohio, 41-20.
The Steelers come to town next week.