CLEVELAND—Maybe, it was the cold.
Whatever it is, the Browns are playing the 8-3 Chargers pretty tough—at least in the first half.
The Browns should be ahead of the Chargers at the half, but a missed field goal and a fumble inside the Chargers' five-yard line prevented the Browns from tying or taking the lead and find themselves trailing 13-7 at the half.
The Browns took the opening kickoff and marched 72 yards in 10 plays for a quick 7-0 lead with 8:37 left in the first quarter. Brady Quinn hit Mohamed Massquoi on an 11-yard slant in the back of the end zone. Jerome Harrison, starting for the injured Jamal Lewis had four carries for 21 yards and newly signed tight end Evan Moore had three receptions for 42 yards. The last time the Browns scored on their opening possession was on Nov. 11, 2007 against the Steelers. The Browns had the ball for 6:23 on the drive.
Quinn was 12-of-20 for 159 yards and a touchdown in the first half, but fumbled after being sacked when the Browns were near the Chargers' goal line.
The Chargers answered the Browns score quickly as kicked a 32-yard field goal from Nate Kaeding with 2:59 left in the first quarter. The Chargers went 55 yards in 12 plays, taking 5:38 off the clock. Philip Rivers hit Antonio Gates three times for 39 yards on the drive.
The Browns started moving the ball again and moved to the Chargers' 31 after a 43 yard catch by Brian Robiskie set up a field goal attempt. With 58 seconds left in the first quarter, Phil Dawson was wide left from 43 yards out.
On the first play after the missed field goal, Rivers threw a short pass to fullback Mike Tolbert, who rambled 66 yards untouched to give the Chargers a 10-7 lead with 45 seconds left in the first quarter.
The Browns started at their 18 after a penalty on the kickoff after the San Diego score and started moving the ball. A 14-yard pass to Harrison got the drive going and then another pass to Harrison for 12 yards moved the ball to the Chargers' 43.
Quinn then hit Moore for 18 yards to the 25. A Quinn scramble moved the ball to the 16 for third-and-one. Quinn did a sneak over right guard for the first down.
On third-and-three from the eight, Quinn hit Chansi Stuckey for a first down to the two. Harrison was dropped for a loss on first down back to the four and Quinn threw incomplete on second down. As he tried to scramble, Quinn was sacked by Shaun Phillips and the ball was recovered by Jacques Cesaire at the 13.
The Chargers got the ball back after a Browns' punt and moved to the 35 with six seconds left as Legedu Naanee threw a 21-yard flea-flicker to LaDainian Tomlinson. Rivers hit Malcom Floyd on a quick out to the 24 with two seconds left and then Kaeding hit the field goal as time expired.
Big Play O: The Browns had nine offensive plays of 10 yards or more in the first half. QB Brady Quinn finished the first half 12-of-20 for 159 yards with a touchdown and a fumble. He was 6-of-6 for 61 yards on the first scoring drive.
Robiskie Action: Rookie WR Brian Robiskie, who has been inactive the past two weeks was active and caught a third down pass for a first down. He then had a 43-yard reception on the next possession. He had two receptions for 50 yards.
Jerome's Action: RB Jerome Harrison carried 9 times for 30 yards and caught three passes for 27 yards in the first half.
New Guy: Newly signed TE Evan Moore caught three passes on the Browns' first possession for 42 yards. Moore (6-6, 247) was a free agent from Stanford who spent four weeks on the Browns' practice squad. He was cut by the Packers at the end of training camp. Moore had four receptions for 60 yards.
Mosley, Adams Start: C.J. Mosley started in place of DL Kenyon Coleman at left end, while Mike Adams started at right cornerback in place of Brandon McDonald, while Hank Poteat moved to safety in Pool's place. Mosley injured his right ankle on the first defensive series.