Chubb leads Browns over mistake-prone Washington
Nick Chubb rushed for 108 yards and two touchdowns to spur the Cleveland Browns to a 34-20 win over the visiting Washington Football Team on Sunday afternoon at First Energy Stadium.
Baker Mayfield was 16-of-23 passing with 156 yards and two touchdowns, and the Browns cashed in four Dwayne Haskins Jr. turnovers for 24 points to move to 2-1 for the first time since 2011. Cleveland will play next week with a record above .500 for the first time since Dec. 14, 2014, breaking a string of 84 straight weeks at or below .500.
Cleveland rushed for 158 yards and did not have a turnover while forcing five from Washington.
Haskins completed 21 of 37 passes for 224 yards for Washington (1-2), but his third pick — snagged by Browns linebacker B.J. Goodson — set up Cleveland’s clinching touchdown. Three plays after the interception, Chubb streaked around the left side for a 20-yard touchdown and a 31-20 lead with 8:40 remaining.
Washington’s fifth turnover, and Haskins’ fourth, led to a 30-yard Cody Parkey field goal and a 34-20 lead with 1:10 left. The possession began when defensive end Myles Garrett sacked Haskins, forced a fumble, and recovered it on the Washington side of the 50.
Dontrelle Inman had two touchdown receptions for Washington, his first NFL touchdowns since Dec. 30, 2018 with the Indianapolis Colts. He left late in the fourth quarter with a left hand/wrist injury.
Washington took a second-half lead at 20-17 when Haskins found Inman with an 11-yard touchdown pass with 2:20 left in the third.
The Browns regained the lead for good in the fourth when Mayfield finished off an 11-play drive with a 3-yard touchdown pass to rookie tight end Harrison Bryant. Bryant’s first career TD gave Cleveland the 24-20 edge with 11:19 remaining.
Washington trailed 17-7 at the half, extending its season-long first-half issues. Washington has been outscored 54-14 in the first two quarters this season.
However, Washington finally scored first in a game this season, and scored its initial first-quarter points of the year when Haskins fired a 17-yard touchdown pass to Inman.
Things unraveled for Washington in the second quarter. Cleveland forced three turnovers and scored 17 straight points going into the break.
Cleveland got on the board with Parkey’s 42-yard field goal with 10:48 left in the half. It was his first field-goal attempt of the season.
Haskins’ first interception of the season, an overthrow down the middle hauled in by Cleveland safety Karl Joseph, set up the Browns for a go-ahead touchdown. Three plays after the turnover, Chubb creased the middle of the defense for a 16-yard touchdown run and a 10-7 lead with 5:58 left in the half.
Another Haskins’ interception, this one snagged by linebacker Malcom Smith, set up Mayfield’s 9-yard scoring strike to Kareem Hunt for a 17-7 Cleveland lead with just 32 seconds left.
There was more bad news for Washington in the first half. Defensive end Chase Young, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2020 draft, left the game in the middle of the second quarter with a groin injury. He did not return.
Washington pulled to within 17-13 with 9:05 left in the third after Antonio Gibson plowed in for a 2-yard touchdown run. Dustin Hopkins missed the extra point.
Washington’s fifth turnover was a lost fumble on the final play of the first half.
–Field Level Media