The Cleveland Browns and Los Angeles Chargers engaged in a whale of a football game last year in California. The Chargers came out on top in a 47-42 win, all while scoring 21 fourth quarter points. That game happened 364 days ago! Would today’s game in Cleveland have this type of offensive explosion? And could the Guardians who were in attendance today bring some magic like last night?
— 💙⚾ Shelly ⚾❤️ (@shellyBH4lyfe) October 9, 2022
It sure was exciting and entertaining, but in the end the Browns fell to the Los Angeles Chargers, 30-28, when Cade York, the rookie big-legged kicker from LSU who the Browns used a draft pick on, watched his 53 yard field goal with ten seconds left sail just right of the uprights.
Heartbreak in Ohio. Cade York misses the game-winning field goal and the Chargers (-1.5) escape with the win and cover #LACvsCLEpic.twitter.com/EE8H3eHxBg
— Nitrobetting.eu Sportsbook (@BtcNitrobetting) October 9, 2022
The Browns are now at 2-3 on the young season. And Coach Kevin Stefanski again is asked what happened…
#Browns Kevin Stefanski on the loss to the #Chargers pic.twitter.com/gnsNwKkf7X
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) October 9, 2022
You can sense the frustration growing in this team.
The Browns took the opening kickoff and marched down the field for the first score on a 41 yard touchdown run by Nick Chubb. Five plays in and the Browns start the scoring.
Nick Chubb breaking all the tackles! 💪
📺: #LACvsCLE on CBS
📱: Stream on NFL+ https://t.co/psZXYKrNKH pic.twitter.com/3oR7QMr5ak
— NFL (@NFL) October 9, 2022
The Bolts first offensive series with the ball, they moved down the field with a bunch of short passes but two short incompletes, the second on fourth down. Missing that pass, they turn it over to the Browns.
Browns up 14-0!
On the ensuing possession the Browns scored another TD on a nice pass and run by Amari Cooper. Coach Stefanski drew up some nice runs and passes to Kareen Hunt and Cooper, respectively, in that series. The big play was a third and 1 QB run for 11 yards by Brissett. The offense was clicking.
Amari Cooper got his defender on skates for another Browns touchdown 😱pic.twitter.com/Y62wkpoRGu
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) October 9, 2022
At the end of the quarter the Chargers were able to get a field goal only after Greg Newsome made a TD saving tackle. Austin Ekeler and the Bolts were struggling running the ball all year. But a quick run over right guard leads to a 71 yard run that had Newsome NOT tackled him, would have been a TD. Three plays and a penalty and the Browns only gave up three. Ekeler would finish the day with 173 yards running the football.
But as quickly as the Browns looked good, they looked poor. The Chargers got two quick scores to take the lead, 17-14. Denzel Ward is being identified by every team as the man to challenge. And he has struggled. On the first TD drive he was beaten twice by Herbert to Williams passes. Ward’s responsibility most of the day was Williams until Denzel was placed in the concussion protocol late in the fourth quarter. With today’s big game, Mike Williams tied Chad Johnson’s AFC record of five straight 100 yard receiving games on the road.
The Browns get a quick score by Chubb, to go up by 4. But a chance to pad their lead at the break falls apart as York misses a 45 yard field goal.
At the break the Browns still lead, 21-17.
Los Angeles takes the kickoff for the 2nd half and Ekeler has a great run from 22 yards out to score and put the Chargers back on top.
The Browns with the ball now opt to go for it on fourth down, but somehow Stefanski didn’t want Brissett to go for it like he has successfully 100% of the times this year. He ran Hunt into a wall and they turned it over on downs.
#Browns go for it on 4th-and-1 and fail. For some reason they chose not to sneak it with Jacoby Brissett. Hate it.
— Camryn Justice (@camijustice) October 9, 2022
The Chargers looked poised to score another TD but a great open field tackle by Greg Newsome again led to three points. Newsome keeps making plays for this defense.
On the ensuing drive Brissett finds Donovan Peoples-Jones on three of four passes to move the ball 49 yards! With the ball on the 11 and facing third and 5, Jacoby finds Njoku for 9 yards and a huge first down. Hunt then finds the endzone to put the Browns back on top, 28-27.
Kareem Hunt goes airborne to take the lead!#Browns TD drive: 11 plays, 75 yards #LACvsCLE l (via @NFL) pic.twitter.com/cF0DgXgcKF
— Bally Sports Cleveland (@BallySportsCLE) October 9, 2022
The Chargers had very little trouble with the Browns defense for large portions of this game. A thirteen play, 66 yard drive by Herbert ended with a field goal to put the Chargers back on top, 30-28.
Moving down the field, Brissett and the Browns get quickly into the red zone for a TD that would put them on top. But as Brissett was escaping the pressure, he tried to throw to Cooper in the back of the endzone. The pass was intercepted by Alohi Gilman for Los Angeles. Key plays in the drive included two tough third down catches to keep the drive alive by David Njoku! But Brissett, had he kept running, probably would have made the first down at roughly the 2 yard line.
With less than 3 minutes left, the Chargers are held by the Browns. But strangely the Chargers decide to go for the first down on fourth and two and are stymied by the rookie cornerback, Martin Emerson, who came in for the injured Denzel Ward.
One More Chance…? Nope!
46 yards to go for a TD or game winning field goal, and after this crazy game, what more could you ask for? A quick pass to Cooper for a first down to the 35. Then, with no timeouts, Stefanski calls for a run by Hunt which goes for no gain and chews up valuable time. Brissett tried on the next play to hit DPJ with a game winning pass but he caught it out of bounds. Another incomplete to DPJ has Cade York come in for the game winning field goal. Remember, he had missed earlier from 45 yards, and this was a bit longer. But his kick stayed wide right.
The next three games for the Browns are brutal with the Patriots coming to town, an away game in Baltimore and a Monday night, Halloween game against the Bengals.
With a chance to stay in first place, the Browns now find themselves in a hole they dug themselves with a suspect and porous defense, questionable play calling from the bench, and missed opportunities.
Some Statistics from the game:
Austin Ekeler 173 yards rushing with two TDs.
Mike Williams 10 catches 134 yards.
Justin Herbert 22/34 228 yards
Nick Chubb 134 yards one TD
Jacoby Brissett 21/34 230 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT, and a QBR of 79.3
David Njoku 6 catches 88 yards
Next game: Sunday, 10/16, 1:00 pm at home. It’s Patriots week. Belichick is coming back to the Land!
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October 9, 2022 at 11:03 pm
Amazing recap of the game! Sadly I couldn’t watch it I was at work and this filled me in perfectly. Also really loved reading San Diego, it really is hard getting used to Los Angeles.
October 10, 2022 at 3:25 pm
Welp, you are most definitely correct! Hard to get used to that! It’s fixed!
Thanks for reading!
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