Maybe the Browns need more distractions.
After a week of talk regarding Kellen Winslow's suspension, the Browns came out and built a 10-point first half lead and after squandering it, hung on for a 23-17 win over the Jaguars. The win improves the Browns to 3-4 with a chance to even their record next week at home against the Ravens.
The Browns built their lead in the first half as Derek Anderson hooked up with Donte Stallworth for a three-yard touchdown and Jamal Lewis had a two-yard run for a score. Prior to Lewis' touchdown, Anderson hit Steve Heiden for 51 yards to set up the score. Phil Dawson added a 32-yard field goal to give the Browns 17 points in the first half.
After stopping the Jaguars regularly in the first half, the Jaguars moved willfully in the third quarter. On their first possession, they took the kickoff and marched 72 yards for a touchdown to cut the lead to 17-14 with 10:27 to play in the third quarter. A big play was just prior to the touchdown when the Jaguars' decided to go for it on fourth down from the Browns' 10 and went for it on fourth down and converted. On the next play, David Garrard hit Matt Jones on a slant for an eight-yard touchdown in front of Brandon McDonald to make it 17-14 with 10:27 to play in the third quarter.
After the Browns were forced to punt, the Jaguars started moving the ball again and stalled at the Browns' 20 and attempted to tie the score as Josh Scobee attempted a 37-yard field goal. However, Shaun Rogers broke through and blocked the kick. Rogers had just stopped Maurice Jones-Drew on a third down run forcing the field goal attempt.
The Browns offense was again non-existent on the next series and they punted back to the Jaguars. The Jags took the ball and moved into field goal position again and Scobee hit a career long 53-yarder to tie the game at 17-17 with 8:48 to play.
The Browns took a 20-17 lead with 4:35 to play as Dawson kicked his second field goal, a 20-yarder. The Browns should've scored a touchdown as they had the ball once again first down on the Jaguars' one after Anderson hit Syndric Steptoe on a slant and he broke a couple of tackles and went 53 yards to the one before he was pushed out of bounds.
On first down after a penalty on the Jaguars, Lewis was stopped for a one-yard loss. Anderson then threw incomplete intended for Charles Ali. On third down, Anderson then overthrew Braylon Edwards, who was open in the end zone.
The Browns had a chance to put the game away as they received a big break on the ensuing kickoff as rookie Beau Bell hit Bruce Witherspoon on the return and Josh Cribbs recovered at the Jaguars' 25. However, the Browns took just 24 seconds off the clock before the Browns settled for a 42-yard field goal by Dawson with 4:06 left to play to make it 23-17
The defense was able to force a three-and-out and the Browns took over with 2:57 to play with a six-point lead at their own 33. Lewis was stopped for no gain on first down and then had a five-yard gain on second down. On third down, Lewis ran for one yard. The Jaguars were forced to used all of their timeouts, but the Browns were forced to punt at the two-minute warning.
Jones-Drew returned the punt to the 30 and started with 1:51 to play. Brodney Pool raced into from the left side and sacked Garrard with a minute to go. On third-and-three, Garrard threw incomplete with 36 seconds to play. On fourth down, Garrard completed a pass for the first down, but the Jaguars were flagged for a personal foul after the play moving the ball back to their own 39.
Garrard hit Jones on a short pass, but the Browns let him go 35 yards to the Browns' 26 and he got out of bounds to stop the clock with 16 seconds to play. Garrard threw incomplete in the end zone on first down, but then on second down threw again to Jones. He had the ball and it was tipped by McDonald. However, Jones had a chance to catch it again, but the ball was deflected off of Nick Sorenson's helmet and fell incomplete with one second left. Garrard threw a final attempt into the end zone that fell incomplete giving the Browns the win.
Fewer Flags: After being one of the most penalized teams in the NFL, the Browns had no penalties until 10:32 left in the fourth quarter when Rogers was called for roughing the passer. The penalty set up the field goal that tied the score. That was their lone penalty.
Lucky Bounce: Anderson lost the ball early in the fourth quarter as he was stripped on a sack, but OL Joe Thomas recovered it. On the play prior, Anderson was intercepted by DB Rashean Mathis, but the Jaguars were offside negating the turnover.
Statistically Speaking: Anderson was 14-of-22 for 246 yards with a touchdown and no interceptions. He was sacked once and his QB rating was 95.6. RB Jamal Lewis was 20 for 81 and a touchdown. TE Steve Heiden had three receptions for 73 yards, while Stallworth had three catches for 13 yards and a touchdown. WR Braylon Edwards had two catches for 64 yards, while WR Syndric Steptoe had one catch for 53 yards.
2-0 Without K2: The Browns are 2-0 this season without the services of TE Kellen Winslow. He missed the Giants' game with a staph infection and then the Jaguars' game with a suspension—that was later rescinded.
The Rogers' Factor: DL Shaun Rogers led the Browns with nine tackles. He also had a sack and blocked a field goal. DB Brodney Pool and LB D'Qwell Jackson also registered sacks.
Turnover Factor: There was only one turnover in the game and it was on a kickoff return, recovered by WR Josh Cribbs after a hit by rookie LB Beau Bell. The Browns converted the miscue into their final field goal.