DETROIT — The sobering reality of just how violent professional football is occurred with 8 minutes, 4 seconds remaining in the first half.
Cleveland Browns' kickoff cover man, Nick Sorensen, was met by two Detroit Lions' blockers and Sorensen instantly went to the ground. Once the play was whistled dead, his teammates motioned feverishly to the team's medical staff.
The short delay ended with Sorensen being carted off the field. His entire body was strapped down.
As the cart exited the field, play resumed.
Sorensen's scare aside, the Browns lead the Lions 24-14 at halftime of the Great Lakes Classic at Ford Field.
Offensively, the Browns showcased a no-huddle look throughout the first half. Cleveland racked up 17 first downs and 217 yards of offense (152 passing, 65 rushing). Individually, Jake Delhomme was 20-for-25 passing for 152 yards and one touchdown. He did not throw an interception.
In addition, the Browns are owning the time of possession 19:39-10:21.
On the game's opening drive, the Browns drove 45 yards on 15 plays in 7:49 culminating in a 35-yard field goal by Phil Dawson. Delhomme directed 13 of those plays. Seneca Wallace played two snaps when the Browns reached the Lions' 10-yard-line.
The Lions answered quickly. On their first play from scrimmage, rookie running back Javid Best, who received the start over Kevin Smith, went 51 yards. Two plays later Stafford connected with Bryant Johnson from seven yards out to give the Lions' their only lead of the half 7-3. The drive lasted 1:28.
On the touchdown pass, the 6-foot-3 Johnson was fronted by 5-10 cornerback Sheldon Brown. Stafford's delivery of the ball was high enough to be just out of Browns' reach.
Defensively, each team has a fumble recovery for a touchdown.
Near the end of the first quarter, Browns defensive lineman Brian Schaeffering forced Smith to fumble. Eric Wright scooped up the ball and went 44 yards untouched for the score. With 10 yards to go, Wright did his best Deion Sanders impersonation.
The Browns pushed their lead to 17-7 in the second quarter on a 5-yard pass from Delhomme to Lawrence Vickers.
Still, Cleveland ended the half with a 1-yard touchdown run by Peyton Hillis, who capped a nine-play, 78-yard drive that took 3:16 off the clock.
Stafford is 9-for-11 passing for 92 yards and a touchdown while Calvin Johnson has two catches for 42 yards.