Browns Slip by Falcons

The Browns won their second game on the road, and third this season, by holding on for a 17-13 victory in Atlanta on Sunday afternoon. Fred Greetham recaps the win, which takes the team to 3-6 with a match-up against the Steelers coming up a week from today...

The Browns went to Atlanta to try and clip the Falcons' wings.

Believe it or not, they succeeded and now have won two of three to improve to 3-6. Meanwhile, the Falcons drop to 5-4.

The Browns scored two quick touchdowns early and were up 14-0. They were able to withstand a shaky second half, offensively and hang on for a 17-13 win as Michael Vick fumbled inside the Browns 30 as the Falcons were driving. Jereme Perry fell on the loose ball and the Browns were on their way to their third win of the season.

The Browns got on the board first when Reuben Droughns plowed in from one-yard out on fourth-and-goal to give the Browns a 7-0 lead with 1:36 to play in the first quarter. The big play was a 40-yard pass from Charlie Frye to Kellen Winslow which gave the Browns a first down on the Falcons' six. Instead of settling for a field goal, Romeo Crennel decided to go for the touchdown and Droughns followed Cosey Coleman and Ryan Tucker into the end zone.

The Browns increased their lead to 14-0 early in the second quarter after Sean Jones intercepted Michael Vick on the first play of the second quarter. A personal foul was tacked on after the play on the Falcons and the Browns took over in Falcon's territory. Frye hit Braylon Edwards for a 19-yard touchdown score with 11:59 to play. Edwards beat former Browns' safety Chris Crocker for the score. 

Leading 14-0, the Browns had a chance to extend their lead after Steve Heiden blocked a punt, but Droughns fumbled the ball away and the Falcons went into the hurry up and moved down the field for their first score.

A personal foul by Orpheus Roye moved the Falcons to the Browns' 45. It was the first time the Falcons had been in Browns territory in the first half. After converting a third down to Warrick Dunn, the Falcons moved to the 26, but Ashley Lelie dropped a would-be touchdown on third down as Brian Russell hit him. Morten Anderson put the Falcons on the scoreboard with three seconds to play as he hit a 44-yard field goal to make it 14-3 at the half.

Similar to the Chargers' game, the Browns became conservative in the second half as they refused to throw the ball on third down and didn't do much on offense in the third quarter and for most of the fourth.

The Falcons couldn't take advantage of the Browns ineffectiveness and went for a first down from the Browns' 31 on fourth-and-one with 3:48 to play. Brodney Pool intercepted Vick and the Browns took over on their own one.

The Browns had a similar situation to last week's game with the Chargers when the Browns had the ball inside their own five late in the third quarter, the Browns handed off to Terrelle Smith on first down and then gave it to Droughns on second down. On third-and-four from their eight, Frye was sacked on the one foot line. It appeared he was in the end zone for a sack but the challenge was not upheld and the Browns had to punt from the one foot line.

Allen Rossum took Dave Zastudil's punt and returned the punt to the Browns' 12. Vick hit Michael Jenkins for a 12-yard touchdown and the Falcons pulled to within four at 14-10 with 1:06 to play in the third quarter.

Andersen pulled the Falcons to within one at 14-13 with 8:52 to play as he hit a 41-yard field goal. Vick had a 20-yard run on the drive to set up the score.

The Browns made it 17-13 as Phil Dawson kicked a 43-yard field goal with 5:35 to play in the game. The big play on the drive was a 36-yard pass from Frye to Kellen Winslow, who made an acrobatic catch and moved the ball into field goal range.

After the field goal, Vick threw deep to Roddy White for 55 yards, which took the ball all the way to the Browns' 17. White got behind rookie Jereme Perry. However, Vick tried to run and Perry recovered the fumble at the Browns' 28 with 2:18 to play.

The Browns were able to hold the ball until the final 17 seconds of the game and the Falcons' last ditch effort on a flea flicker was to no avail and the Browns hung on.


No Reversal Helps Falcons: The Falcons challenged that QB Charlie Frye was sacked in the end zone for a safety, but the officials ruled he was down inside the one. However, the Falcons scored a touchdown after the Browns punt for a net of five plus points.

Good D: In the first half, the Falcons had seven possessions. They punted five times, had an interception and kicked a field goal. They punted on their first possession of the second half and Vick threw his second interception on the second series.

No O: After getting two quick touchdowns early, the Browns did little the rest of the game. The Browns punted on their first five possessions of the second half. After the Falcons made it 14-13, the Browns moved the ball and were able to kick a field goal.

Bad Move: TE Kellen Winslow picked up a personal foul and put the Browns inside their own 10 in the fourth quarter. He hit former Browns S Chris Crocker after the whistle. Winslow finished with five receptions for 90 yards.

Big Block: TE Steve Heiden got his hand on a punt with 2:32 to play in the first half and the Browns took over on the Falcons' 36. The punt from P Michael Koenen went just 12 yards. However, RB Reuben Droughns fumbled the ball right back to the Falcons after the Browns had moved inside the 25.

Jones Continues to Shine: S Sean Jones intercepted QB Michael Vick on the first play of the second quarter. Vick was trying to hit TE Alge Crumpler when Jones stepped in front of him and picked up his fifth interception of the season. Jones played at Georgia. The Browns were able to convert the turnover into a touchdown.

Frye Goes Deep: QB Charlie Frye tried to throw long twice on the first offensive series. He overthrew WR Braylon Edwards and he also overthrew WR Dennis Northcutt. Both were open. Frye was sacked in the first quarter by T.J. Jackson. His first long completion was for 40 yards when he hit TE Kellen Winslow to the Falcons' six-yard-line. Frye was 9-of-11 for 108 yards in the first half, including one touchdown and no interceptions. Frye also used his legs as he started the second half with a 17-yard scramble. Frye was sacked three times. He finished 16–of-22 for 165 yards with one touchdown. He was sacked four times.

Zastudil Pinned: P Dave Zastudil pinned the Falcons inside the ten at the five-yard line in the first quarter with a 52-yard boot. The Browns were able to force a three-and-out and the Browns regained possession in the Falcons' territory and turned it into a touchdown. His first punt of the second half placed the Falcons at their own nine. He had a 29-yard punt to start the fourth quarter which gave the Falcons good field position.

Wimbley Sack: LB Kamerion Wimbley sacked QB Michael Vick in the fourth quarter. It was his fifth sack of the season and the Browns only sack of the game. He finished with five tackles.

Vick Scrambling: QB Michael Vick scrambled out of trouble on several occasions after it appeared the Browns had him hemmed in. The Browns sacked Vick once. He had runs of 30- and 20-yards and finished with 74 yards rushing. However, he fumbled the ball and the game away in the final two minutes. He was 15-of-39 for 185 yards, including one touchdown and two interceptions.

Not Much Room: RB Reuben Droughns had 21 carries for just 54 yards. However, he did score a touchdown on fourth-and-one.

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