Browns Week 14 instant reactions: Joe Burrow finally beats Cleveland

Bengals, Joe Burrow. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Bengals, Joe Burrow. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

Joe Burrow got his first win ever against the Cleveland Browns as the Bengals ended their in-state rival’s two-game winning streak

The Cleveland Browns have had Joe Burrow’s number heading into this one. Overall, he’s been 0-4 against them and Kevin Stefanski was 5-0 as the coach against the Cincinnati Bengals.

That changed in Week 14 as the Bengals scored a huge win, 23-10, over their divisional rivals to improve to 9-4 on the season.

In the process, they knocked the Browns down to 4-8 and ended their two-game winning streak which saw them take out Tampa Bay and Houston in their past two outings.

Final. 10. 53. 23. 56

Browns ground game was non-existent

Cleveland’s defense was holding on early in the game and gave them a shot. The problem was, the Browns didn’t do enough on offense. Much of that was due to their inability to get the ball moving on the ground.

Injuries to the offensive line had a lot to do with it as Nick Chubb was hit almost instantly whenever he would get the ball. He finished with just 34 yards on 14 carries and Kareem Hunt had six yards on four attempts. The most effective runner was Deshaun Watson, who went for 33 on six runs.

Deshaun Watson looked much better under center

Overall, Watson looked much better under center for the Browns this weekend. His first pass of the game was a bullet to Amari Cooper and he finished with 276 yards with his first touchdown pass of the season.

He did have another pick on a play that should have been a deep completion. Watson made the right read but took too long to pull the trigger and by the time he fired it to Donovan Peoples-Jones, Jessie Bates was able to catch up and pick off the ball.

Mistakes remain an issue

Cleveland had more than its share of mistakes again. Tony Fields, who has been solid in recent weeks, was called for a roughing the kicker penalty when he ran into punter Drue Chrisman. That gave them a new set of downs and a 33-yard penalty for pass interference on Denzel Ward set up a 15-yard touchdown for Ja’Marr Chase — which was also with Ward in coverage.

That put the Bengals up 7-0 and the Browns never caught back up.

What’s next for the Browns?

After this one, Cleveland now heads home to host the Baltimore Ravens followed by the New Orleans Saints. At 5-8, they’ll have to win every game in order to finish with a winning record, but that’s about all they can play for at this point.