CLEVELAND — With 10 days to prepare ahead of Sunday’s showdown with the Lions, Brandon Weeden made his first start since Week #2 at Baltimore.
It’s was a defensive battle early in Cleveland between the Browns and the Lions. Detroit’s offense spent more time on the field, but managed only 7 points on a one-yard TD pass from Matthew Stafford to Joseph Fauria following two pass interference penalties on Browns defensive back Joe Haden. The first quarter came to a close with Travis Benjamin taking an end around for 45-yards to the Lions 29-yard line.
The Browns dominated the second quarter on both offense and defense. Cleveland outscored the Lions 17-0 and held Detroit’s offense in check. Calvin Johnson, Detroit’s big wide receiver, had one catch for 7 yards. The Browns scored their two touchdowns on passing plays, the first, a 2-yard pass to Chris Ogbonnaya and a 4-yard pass to Greg Little.
The Browns have 115 first half rushing yards, already a single-game season high and their most in a 1st half since 2004.
They have also led at the half in all six games this season.
The Lions attacked the Browns linebackers in the third quarter and it led to a Lions touchdown drive when Stafford hit Reggie Bush on an 18-yard pass to cut the Browns lead to 17-14. Detroit was threatening again in the third quarter, but Stafford’s pass was tipped by Buster Skrine in the endzone and intercepted by Tashaun Gipson.
Stafford had a huge 4th quarter against the Browns struggling defense. The Lions extended their lead and grabbed the 31-17 win, ending the three-game winning streak for the Browns.
The Browns will travel to Green Bay next week to take on the Packers. Kickoff is at 4:25 p.m.