The Cleveland Browns and Jacksonville Jaguars met in a compelling matchup of teams combining for 6 wins this week.
The game began with great execution on offense by both teams. Brandon Weeden threw a nice sideline pass for Josh Gordon that set the Browns up on the five-yard line. They were able to pound the ball in with Willis McGahee running behind Billy Winn as a fullback on the play. The Jaguars responded by executing a terrific drive where they were able to run and throw the ball on an 8 play, 80 yard drive that was capped off by a Chad Henne 18-yard touchdown pass to Clay Harbor, evening the score at 7-7.
Entering the second quarter, the offensive strategy for the Browns was painfully clear; get the ball to Josh Gordon. Early in the second quarter, after three runs to McGahee, Weeden threw six passes with four of them intended for Gordon. The three he completed totaled 50 yards including the 21 yard touchdown pass that put the Browns up 14-7. Henne tried to go deep on the first play of the ensuing possession and underthrew a pass intended for Cecil Shorts. As a result, Joe Haden was able to intercept it and give the Browns the ball back near midfield. The Browns were unable to capitalize after a three and out including a sack fumble from Sen’Derrick Marks.
Towards the end of the half, the Browns had the ball on their own end of the field trying to drive to start a drive. Weeden forced a throw down the middle of the field that ended up behind Jordan Cameron that was intercepted by Jonathan Cyprien, who was able to set the Jaguars up in Browns territory.; Cameron did not see it or did not make a great effort to adjust and at least try to knock down the ball. The Jaguars were able to set up shop in Browns territory and were able to score on a sweep to the outside to where Maurice Jones-Drew threw a pass to Marcedes Lewis to tie the game at 14-14.
Weeden came right out on the next drive and threw another interception; this time to Dwayne Gratz. The Jaguars were not able to muster a drive, but they were able to get three points on a Josh Scobee 44-yard field goal. The Browns came out and this time, Weeden was sacked and fumbled the football, leading to another Scobee field goal; this time for 36 yards. The Jaguars went into half time up 20-14.
The Browns were able to come out firing in the second half, but their first scoring drive came at a price. They were able to retake the lead after a 10 play 80 yard capped off with a 4-yard touchdown pass from Weeden to Greg Little. Unfortunately, earlier in the drive, Gordon took a hit near the sideline that knocked off his helmet and caused him to leave the field to have an injury to his head examined, possibly for a concussion. Gordon left the game with 7 catches on 10 targets for 149 yards and a touchdown in basically one half of play. Nevertheless, the Browns had a 21-20 lead. Gordon would return to the game later and get a few more catches.
After the teams exchanged punts back and forth, midway through the fourth quarter, the game took another bizarre turn after the Browns took over on their half of the field. Alex Mack snapped a ball too high, sailing over Weeden’s head landing in the end zone. Weeden went ahead and kicked the ball out of the back of the end zone, resulting in a safety and a 22-21 lead for the Jaguars while also getting the ball. The Jaguars were then able to get a big return on the safety punt from Ace Sanders who set them up in good field position. They were able to move the ball further down before getting a third Scobee field goal, giving the Jaguars a 25-21 lead .
The Browns received the kickoff and were stuck on their own 5 yard line. On what looked like a relatively average pass and catch from Weeden to Gordon, the Jaguars missed a tackle and Gordon was off to the races, beating the Jaguars defenders and getting to the end zone. That play gave him a total of 10 catches for 261 yards and 2 touchdowns on the game; his second game in a row with over 200 receiving yards (an NFL first) and breaking the franchise record for receiving yards in a game that he set the previous week. It also gave the Browns a 28-25 lead with under four minutes to play.
The Jaguars, down three, started at their own 20 after a Spencer Lanning touchback. After an incomplete pass and an offsides call, Henne found Sanders for a 25 yard gain. Henne then found Shorts for 16 yards and Jones-Drew for 4 yards. The Jaguars went with back to back runs to Drew that went for 9 yards, setting up a 3rd-down and 1 situation. Drew was able to pick up the first down and extend the drive. After a one yard completion and another incomplete pass, the Jaguars were faced with a critical moment. On 3rd-down and 9, Henne went back to pass, looked to his left and threw a perfect pass over the shoulder to Shorts on a double move, hitting him in stride in the end zone, getting both feet in bounds behind Haden. With 40 seconds left, the Jaguars took a 32-28 lead.
The Browns were able to get close enough to throw up a hail mary, which ultimately fell incomplete. The Texans won the game, their third in four weeks while the Browns lost another game, largely due to the incompetence of their offense.