4th Quarter Collapse: Broncos 34, Browns 30

A game that started off with tremendous optimism ends with a defensive collapse, as the Browns once again lose late, this time to an injury-depleted Broncos squad. Here's Barry's fourth-quarter blog.

The Browns have a ten point lead to protect entering the fourth quarter.

We couldn't do that last week. Maybe the second time's the charm.

FIRST DRIVE (BROWNS): Quinn starts the fourth by hitting Braylon Edwards for 15, but the play comes back thanks to an offensive pass interference call on K2. The subsequent pass to Donte Stallworth isn't close to the first down, setting up a punt.

The boot is a good one, pinning the Broncos back at the seven.


SECOND DRIVE (BRONCOS): Cutler drops and finds Eddie Royal running deep… he gets past Brandon McDonald, and runs 93 yards for the touchdown.

McDonald knew that something was wrong before the play. He got no safety help at all, and got torched. Remember that when you've giving Brandon McDonald a goat after the game. Sean Jones deserves part of that.

BROWNS 23, BRONCOS 20


THIRD DRIVE (BROWNS): Cribbs runs the ball back to the 50 yards line on the kickoff… he's just amazing.

On first down, Quinn drops but everyone is covered and he ultimately throws the ball out of bounds, more or less in the direction of Braylon Edwards.

After a four-yard run by Harrison, Quinn hits Winslow at the 40, but Dre Bly rips the ball out of Winslow's arms as he is being tackled. Denver's ball at their 38.


FOURTH DRIVE (BRONCOS): There is 12:30 left in the game. Cutler throws incomplete to Scheffler and Royal. On the second play, McDonald had a pick, but dropped the ball. Aaargh!

Rescued from certain doom. Cutler then hits Eddie Royal again, this time for 22 yards to the Browns 40. Not good.

On first down, Kamerion Wimbley blows past BLOCKERS AND SACKS CUTLER SIX YARDS DEEP! Nice! Good to see Kam Wimbley is still playing football.

On second-and-sixteen, Nate Jackson somehow pulls down a ball at the Browns 27, with two safeties on him. Ugggh. Browns defense needs to get tougher in the fourth quarter.

McGinest helps by stopping a rare Broncos run a yard behind the line of scrimmage at the 28. An incomplete pass to Jackson makes it third and long.

Cutler drops and hits Daniel Graham in the middle of the field inside the 20. Graham runs out of a tackle by D'Qwell Jackson, then Mike Adams whiffs, and Graham goes into the end zone for a touchdown.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME? We need some guys in our linebacking corps and defensive secondary who can actually drop a runner. Unbelievable.

BRONCOS 27, BROWNS 23


FIFTH DRIVE (BROWNS): Last game around this time, the Browns started tossing up a series of three-and-outs.

Cribbs takes the kickoff back to the 22. After an incomplete to Stallworth, he gets back intot he action on offense, as Cribbs gets the ball and runs left end for 21 yards. Wow!

That puts the Browns on their own 43. Lewis runs for three, and then QUINN HITS K2 AGAIN! Winslow straight-arms his way down the field to the Broncos 24!

After trying Cribbs again (it didn't work), Quinn hits Lewis with a short toss, and Lewis rumbles upfield for 18 yards to the six.

Quinn drops with first and goal from the six… and HITS STALLWORTH! But Stallworth is stopped right before the goal line.

After a run by Lewis on second down is stacked up, the Browns veteran runner, gets stacked up on third down, and he keeps driving with his legs…. he pushes his way into the end zone for a TOUCHDOWN!

Shanahan challenges the play… DENIED!! TOUCHDOWN BROWNS!!

BROWNS 30, BRONCOS 27

SIXTH DRIVE (BRONCOS): With about five minutes left, Dawson boots the ball into the end zone and Royal has to take a knee.

The Broncos start off running the ball for ten to the Broncos 30, and then the Browns give them another five and a first down with defensive holding on Shaun Rogers.

With the fresh set of towns, Cutler misses Daniel Graham and then tries to hit Nate Jackson. The Broncos wide receiver was clobbered on the play and hobbles off the field as it becomes third and ten.

Cutler hits Stokely for nine on the third and ten, and the Broncos try to go for it on fourth and one from the 45.

Cutler does like what he sees and calls a time out with 3:58 left. The Broncos now have just one time out left.

Hillis pushes his way for the first down… big kid who just got the first down through sheer effort.

So, the Broncos now have a first down on their own 46 and there's 3:30 left.

With the first down, Cutler first misses Hillis on a short pass, and gets eight to Daniel Graham. Going no-huddle, Cutler sneaks and gets two for another first down at the Browns 43.

With 2:30 left, Cutler drops and hits Daniel Graham for 14 yards to the Browns 29 and Browns fans are getting nervous again.

We're at the two minute warning. You can start biting your fingernails now.

The Browns defense is now in freefall.

Cutler drops, sees the middle of the field wide open, and scampers up the middle for nearly 20 yards to the eleven. Ugh. Ugh. ugh.

There is 1:18 left as Cutler looks over the Browns defense, drops and hits Brandon Marshall with the touchdown. Cutler, Royal, and Marshall are scary.

So is the Browns defense tonight.

BRONCOS 34, BROWNS 30


SEVENTH DRIVE (BROWNS): Well, if Quinn can pull this off in his first start, we can just start to work on the statue now.

Prater squibs it downfield, but Cribbs grabs it anyway. He takes it to the Browns 33, where Quinn will start the drive with two timeouts to use.

Browns 33, 1:08 left - Quinn throws right to Winslow. Nine yards to the Browns 42.

Browns 42, 1:03 left – Second and one. Quinn drops, has pressure, jumped and throws off his back foot, throws the ball out of bounds.

Browns 42, 0:58 left – Third and one. Quinn tries to throw over the middle and underthrows Jason Wright.

Browns 42, 0:50 left – Fourth and one. Quinn over throws Kellen Winslow out of an empty backfield. Ball goes right through his hands.

Game over.

Browns blow it in the fourth quarter again. Pin this one on the defense.

 

FINAL SCORE: BRONCOS 34, BROWNS 30


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