9/12/2004 12:48:38 PM: It is a beautiful bright sunny day here in
Cleveland. 10 minutes until kickoff. The Browns have just recognized the 1964
team, who were lined up on the field. Stands are about half-full, but filling up
9/12/2004 12:51:35 PM: The big inflatable helmet is gone, at least for now. Another vestige of the Policy era that looks like it might be changing. It can't be for the worse... the Browns have had any luck at home. The offense is being introduced.
9/12/2004 12:57:08 PM: The Browns have won the toss, and the National Anthem is about to play...
9/12/2004 1:02:37 PM: GE Smith band played the National Anthem on the electric guitar. Very cool. Also cool is a sign by the Northwest players entrance saying "Hall of Fame Voters... NEVER FORGET".
9/12/2004 1:03:32 PM: It's 72 degrees here under sunny skies. Just wonderful... now if only the game lives up to the atmosphere here.
9/12/2004 1:04:18 PM: Dee Brown has a very nice runback to start things off. Browns get the ball at their 33.
9/12/2004 1:10:02 PM: The Browns first drive yields negative yardage, due to Paul Zukausjas' false start. The Ravens get the ball deep in their territory, thanks to a nice roll, and move it close enough to the first down marker for a measurement.
9/12/2004 1:10:54 PM: The Ravens are inches short of the first down, and the Browns have stopped the Ravens and Jamal Lewis on their first possession.
9/12/2004 1:16:51 PM: The Browns continue to be ineffective in their second series, and have about -1 yards running so far. The Browns offense has been slow out of the gate during pre-season, and at least they've been winning the field position battle as a penalty on the punt return give the Ravens the ball on their own 12.
9/12/2004 1:21:03 PM: The Ravens get a gift first down from the Browns as Bentley is called for defensive holding. The Ravens have a first down on their own 18.
9/12/2004 1:24:32 PM: Jamal Lewis churns for a first down, and immediately gets the ball back, getting four yards. Ekuban gets stripped of his helmet going for Boller on second down, but the pass is complete and the Ravens had a third-and-one. Alan Ricard churns for a yard, and the measurement shows he made it. Ravens first down at their 42, third first down on this drive.
9/12/2004 1:26:43 PM: Todd Heap is an important part of the Ravens offense.
Boller dodges a chasing Kenard Lang and hits him for three. Boller overthrows an
open Travis Taylor, creating a fourth-and-one.
9/12/2004 1:28:37 PM: By the way, as we go through a TV timeout, I should be able to produce more updates now, since I've got my laptop fixed and it's going through my cell phone at a nifty 150kbs. We'll see if the batteries hold out, LOL, but we should be good.
9/12/2004 1:33:21 PM: The Browns get their first 1st down, with an eleven yard pass from Garcia to Green. Finally! The Browns running attack has been ineffective so far without the inactive Lee Suggs. They net 2 yards on 2 runs after the first down. Garcia gets sacked by Gary Baxter on third-and-eight to end any momentum the Browns might have had.
9/12/2004 1:34:25 PM: Baltimore's return team is making more yardage for Cleveland than the Browns offense. On the punt return, there is a ten yard penalty from the point of infraction, which moves the ball back to the 12 for the Ratbirds.
9/12/2004 1:37:32 PM: Jamal Lewis just bangs Robert Griffith onto his posterior on a run to the left for 10 yards, but an illegal procedure call wipes it out. An incomplete pass makes it 2nd and 15.
9/12/2004 1:39:16 PM: Boller's pass on third down is short, and the Browns should be able to get the ball back in decent position. Northcutt goes back for the punt. The Browns defense has been moving to the play quickly. Winslow almost gets to the punt, and Northcutt fair catches it at the Browns 42.
9/12/2004 1:44:12 PM: As the first quarter ends, the Browns have been utterly ineffective on offense. A total of six yards in the first quarter.
9/12/2004 1:44:23 PM: As the first quarter ends, the Browns have been utterly ineffective on offense. A total of six yards in the first quarter.
9/12/2004 1:47:05 PM: Some faint boos are heard as the Browns move back two yards on the first series of the second quarter. The crowd senses that the Ravens are very beatable today, if the Browns could stop making so many offensive mistakes. The hope is that the offense will start getting a rhythm as the game goes forward. The Ravens are again the Browns best friend on special teams - another penalty moves the Ravens back to their own six for their first series. The Browns need a turnover, or a break to get on the board....
9/12/2004 2:02:32 PM: The Browns defense, active and pursuing all day, is kicking it up a notch close to the Ravens goal line. The Ravens go to a third-and-nine, and simply hope for some room to punt as they give the ball to Chester Taylor, who gets a couple of yards.
9/12/2004 1:53:29 PM: The special teams battle is going to the Browns, but not by much. Northcutt gets a nice return which is negated by two penalty calls. After some confusion, Zastudil re-kicks from the same spot...
9/12/2004 2:00:07 PM: A pass to Winslow and a run by Green yields the day's second first down for the Browns. Green then churns forward for another five yards, as the Browns start moving the ball for the first time today...
9/12/2004 2:05:11 PM: Winslow is getting more opportunities. He first catches a pass for a Browns first down on the 22, and then Garcia looks for him in the end zone. The Browns have moved past the Ravens 20.
9/12/2004 2:08:42 PM: Phil Dawson converts a 37-yard field goal! BROWNS 3, RAVENS 0 (7:42 left in the second quarter).
9/12/2004 2:10:27 PM: Chaun Thompson pays dividends for the Browns as coming in from the left side on the kick return he chases down and pulls B.J. Sam to the ground on his own 12. Special teams are the difference at this point.
9/12/2004 2:13:44 PM: Kenard Lang is really enjoying the absence of Jonathon Ogden. He blows in nearly unblocked and sacks Kyle Boller, pushing the Ravens to a third and sixteen on their own nineteen. Jamel Lewis, while still a force, is obviously missing the team's Pro Bowl left tackle. His absence is huge.
9/12/2004 2:16:01 PM: A breakdown in coverage allows Kyle Boller, with plenty of time, to complete a pass to Randy Hymes for 17 yards, getting them out of the situation. The Browns follow up with a defensive holding call, allowing the Ravens to get a first down on the Browns 41.
9/12/2004 2:19:37 PM: Kyle Boller is also being a friend to the Browns today. He's relatively ineffective, and Kevin Johnson has just one catch for seven yards. Frost, who tried out for the Ravens last year, is out-classing their current punter, Dave Zastudil, who makes a bad kick, giving the Browns the ball on the 18.
9/12/2004 2:22:10 PM: The fast-moving game is now at the 2 minute warning. The Browns have a third-and-four on their own 24.
9/12/2004 2:23:59 PM: Garcia keeps the ball and scrambles on the third down play, putting the ball at the Ravens 30 yard line.
9/12/2004 2:43:51 PM: The Ravens get the ball to start the second half, and get a first down thanks to Todd Heap. The highlight of the first series is a collision between Jamal Lewis and Orpheus Roye. This year, Roye won.
9/12/2004 2:49:44 PM: Zastudil is not a very good punter. Again, with the
Ravens in Browns territory, he kicks the ball high but short, giving the Browns
the ball on their 12 rather than forcing them closer. He gets a lucky bounce, or
the Browns would have had the ball around the 20.
9/12/2004 2:53:58 PM: The Browns get the ball on the 12, but fail to convert a first down. Again the Browns special team do well, tackling punt returner Deion Sanders almost immediately. The hit brings a roar from the crowd.
9/12/2004 2:57:24 PM: Todd Heap is the only offensive weapon working for the Ravens today. On second down, Boller hits Heap for a 24-yard pass down the Browns 28. The Ravens have their deepest penetration of the day.
9/12/2004 2:59:51 PM: Jamal Lewis, so far, has run 15 times for 39 yards. He is averaging less than three yards a carry. The Browns defense is making up for last year's debacle, but has another 21 minutes to go. Two straight runs by Lewis yield nothing, resulting in a third-and-ten.
9/12/2004 3:02:53 PM: Stover converts a 42-yard field goal with 5:57 left, and the Ratbirds have tied it up, 3-3.
9/12/2004 3:04:56 PM: More special teams problems for the Ratbirds. Wade Richey kicks off out of bounds, the the Browns get it at their own 40. 5:51 remaining in the third quarter.
9/12/2004 3:14:06 PM: The Ravens get the ball back on their 23, and want to run Jamal Lewis down the Browns throats. The strategy isn't very effective, and a ten-yard holding call puts the Ravens into a second-and-twenty. Boller gets ten of it back with a pass to KJ, but the Ravens are forced to punt.
9/12/2004 3:19:31 PM: Jeff Garcia looks, well, a bit Couch-esque as he throws two short passes near the ground to start the Browns drive. But he and Kellen Winslow hook up on third down for 21 yards and a first down.Then, following a James Jackson run, Quincy Morgan slips behind coverage and Garcia puts the ball right in his hands for a 46-yard TOUCHDOWN!! Browns 10, Ravens 3.
9/12/2004 3:23:52 PM: As the Ravens come back out, Kyle Boller fires a
pass to Wilcox, who fumbles and has the ball recovered by Kevin Johnson. The
play is disputed by the Browns, but Butch Davis elects not to challenge the
9/12/2004 3:30:39 PM: With the Ravens moving the ball, Boller fires long for Kevin Johnson. Johnson is matched step-for-step by Anthony Henry, who picks off the ball and knocked to the ground at the Browns seven. The Browns re-gain possession, on what looks like a key play. 13:30 remaining in the fourth quarter.
9/12/2004 3:33:52 PM: The Browns offense is clicking now. Garcia hits Andre Davis with a 51-yard bomb, as Davis had five steps on the closest defensive back. Only Davis stumbling to catch the pass kept him from the end zone. With the Ravens wary of the pass, William Green suddenly becomes more effective, first running through a tackle on a swing pass, and then find a hole to the Ravens 16. There is 8:47 left in the fourth quarter.
9/12/2004 3:41:35 PM: Although William Green had a nice hole on second down, it closed quickly, and the Ravens were able to keep the Browns out of the end zone. Phil Dawson converts a 25-yard field goal, however, to put the Browns up 13-3.
9/12/2004 3:47:26 PM: The Browns have seemingly put the Ratbirds away. With Boller forced to pass, Kenard Lang hits the Ravens QB, forcing a fumble recovered by the Browns on the Ravens six. The Browns take over after the failed challenge of the call. There is 5:48 left in the game.
9/12/2004 4:08:54 PM: With the Browns up 20-3 and about a minute left, this game is over. I'm putting together my post-game story.