ORCHARD PARK — The Cleveland Browns tied their franchise record for most losses in a season as they were run over and bullied by the Buffalo Bills on a cold, windy Sunday afternoon at New Era Field.
With their 33-13 defeat, the Browns became the fourth team in NFL history to go 0-14. They also matched the team record for most losses set during the expansion season in 1999, when the franchise went 2-14.
They also set a team record with their 13th consecutive road loss. The previous record of 12 defeats in a row on the road was established in the 2011-12 seasons.
The Browns have lost 17 consecutive games, 24 of 25 and 32 of 35. They haven’t won since Dec. 13, 2015.
The worst stretch in team history of 3-32 began with the Browns’ previous road game against the Bills, a 26-10 on Nov. 30, 2014 that triggered a five-game losing streak to end the season after Cleveland started 7-4.
Browns quarterback Robert Griffin III struggled last week after missing 11 games with a fractured coracoid bone in his left shoulder suffered Sept. 11 during the regular-season opener. Coach Hue Jackson said last week rust from the layoff could no longer be used as an excuse and “there needs to be a jump in performance.”
Griffin played better but not nearly well enough against the Bills (7-7).
He completed 17-of-28 passes for 196 yards and a rating of 81.8. He ran eight times for 48 yards, including an 18-yard touchdown. He took five sacks.
The Browns cut their deficit to 17-10 when Griffin scrambled for the 18-yard touchdown with 8:58 left in the third quarter. The score came on third-and-6 and one play after wide receiver Terrelle Pryor dropped a pass from Griffin. Pryor finished with four catches for 19 yards.
Earlier in the eight-play, 80-yard drive, Griffin made a great throw to wide receiver Andrew Hawkins for a 33-yard gain on third-and-11 from the Browns’ 32.
The momentum didn’t last for long, though.
The Bills countered with a six-play, 75-yard scoring drive, and running back LeSean McCoy’s 3-yard rushing touchdown gave them a 24-10 lead with 5:50 left in the third quarter. On the previous play, rookie defensive end
Emmanuel Ogbah missed a sack and quarterback Tyrod Taylor scrambled for 28 yards.
The Browns then cut the Bills’ lead to 24-13 with Cody Parkey’s 40-yard field goal with 1:32 left in the third quarter.
Griffin scrambled out of bounds for 3 yards on third-and-22 during the previous play, then went face to face with Bills linebacker Zach Brown as they exchanged words on the sideline. Brown was penalized for roughing Griffin earlier in the series, but the Browns failed to take advantage with a touchdown. Griffin ran for 11 yards to the 2-yard line, though the gain was wiped out by a holding penalty on left tackle Joe Thomas.
The Bills fired back again to make sure the Browns never really threatened. McCoy finished an eight-play, 75-yard march with an 8-yard touchdown run, giving them a 30-13 advantage with 12:38 left in the fourth quarter.
After a three-and-out by the Browns, the Bills extended their lead to 33-13 with Dan Carpenter’s 34-yard field goal with 7:21 left in the third quarter.
The Bills finished with 40 carries for 280 yards and three touchdowns. McCoy led them with 19 carries for 153 yards and two touchdowns.
The Browns let the Bills run right through them early and often, an easy recipe for their 17-3 halftime deficit.
The Bills finished the first half with 17 carries for 133 yards (7.8 average). McCoy led their attack with 10 carries for 91 yards.
The Browns were punished by the Bills through the air as well despite the cold, windy conditions in Orchard Park. The temperature at kickoff was 26 degrees with a wind chill of 14 degrees and winds whipping at 15 mph.
Taylor completed 10-of-15 passes for 105 yards and a touchdown with a rating of 109 in the first half.
Jamie Collins passed his coverage off to fellow Browns linebacker Demario Davis, but he couldn’t keep up with tight end Charles Clay. By the time Taylor’s 19-yard pass reached Clay in the end zone, he was wide open as he adjusted to secure the ball while sliding. The touchdown allowed the Bills to go ahead 17-3 with 34 seconds left in the second quarter.
Earlier on the 13-play, 91-yard drive, the Bills converted third-and-22 when Taylor had plenty of time to throw over the middle to wide receiver Marquise Goodwin. He caught the pass between cornerbacks Jamar Taylor and Briean Boddy-Calhoun for a 23-yard gain and first down at the Browns’ 33.
The Browns were not nearly as effective on offense in the first half.
Griffin 8 of 12 passing but only for 63 yards. His rating was 79.5, and he took three sacks.
After the Bills faced first-and-goal at the 5 on their first possession, they settled for Carpenter’s 21-yard field goal and a 3-0 lead with 10:14 left in the opening quarter.
The Browns faced first-and-goal at the 5 during the ensuing series, but running back Isaiah Crowell ran for a 2-yard loss and Griffin was sacked on back-to-back plays. They settled for Parkey’s 35-yard field goal and a 3-3 tie with 3:50 left in the first quarter.
But the Bills answered right away. They capped an eight-play, 74-yard drive with running back Mike Gillislee’s 3-yard touchdown run and took a 10-3 lead with no time remaining in the first quarter.
Cleveland 3 0 10 0 — 13
Buffalo 10 7 7 9 — 33
BUF—D.Carpenter 21 yard field goal, 10:14.
CLE—Parkey 35 yard field goal, 3:50.
BUF—Gillislee 3 yard rush (D.Carpenter kick), 0:00.
BUF—C.Clay 19 yard pass from T.Taylor (D.Carpenter kick), 0:34.
CLE—Griffin III 18 yard rush (Parkey kick), 8:58.
BUF—L.McCoy 3 yard rush (D.Carpenter kick), 5:50.
CLE—Parkey 40 yard field goal, 1:32.
BUF—L.McCoy 8 yard rush (Kick failed), 12:38.
BUF—D.Carpenter 34 yard field goal, 7:21.
First Downs 16 29
Total Net Yards 269 451
Rushes-Yds 20-107 40-280
Passing 162 171
Sacked-Yds Lost 5-34 1-3
Comp-Att-Int 17-28-0 17-25-0
Punts 5-44.4 2-45.0
Punt Returns 2-23 4-46
Kickoff Returns 5-87 3-62
Interceptions Ret. 0-0 0-0
Penalties-Yards 4-51 5-42
Fumbles-Lost 2-0 0-0
Time of Poss. 25:41 34:19
RUSHING-CLE, Griffin III 8-48, Johnson Jr. 5-31, Crowell 8-28. BUF, L.McCoy 19-153, T.Taylor 7-49, Gillislee 9-37, B.Tate 1-30, J.Williams 3-10, Manuel 1-1.
PASSING-CLE, Griffin III 17-28-0-196. BUF, T.Taylor 17-24-0-174, Manuel 0-1-0-0.
RECEIVING-CLE, Johnson Jr. 5-62, Pryor Sr. 4-19, C.Coleman 3-24, Barnidge 2-35, A.Hawkins 1-33, Vitale 1-17, DeValve 1-6. BUF, C.Clay 7-72, M.Goodwin 3-43, L.McCoy 3-16, J.Hunter 1-16, Gillislee 1-14, Felton 1-12, S.Watkins 1-10, R.Woods 1-5.
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