First Half Recap
First off, a big Happy 37th Birthday to the fearless leader of the Dolphins offense, Ryan Fitzpatrick!
The Browns received the ball to start today’s football game. First play of the game, Nick Chubb takes a screen where he broke like 30 tackles and got the Browns offense past midfield. Former Dolphin, Jarvis Landry gets open and gets them into the redzone which is then followed by a Dolphins offside penalty. Browns try to fool the Dolphins with some misdirection but aren’t fooled and the screen goes nowhere thanks to Eric Rowe. Baker Mayfield doesn’t like what he sees on the next play and has to blow the Browns first timeout and then proceeds to misfire on a short pass with third down coming up. Pass interference called on Jomal Wiltz extends the Browns drive as he was working against Landry. Landry proceeds to get revenge on his former team with a touchdown. Browns 7, Dolphins 0.
Ryan Fitzpatrick throws a short pass to Allen Hurns and actually loses a yard on the opening play. Kalen Ballage runs into a brick wall on second down and then Fitzpatrick dances around before getting sacked followed by an illegal shift penalty. Ugly opening drive.
Chubb takes a handoff up the middle for a couple yards but the Browns are called for a holding penalty and are forced to move back. Chubb takes another handoff for about 5 yards and then gets the reception to get the first down for the Browns. Kareem Hunt takes the next handoff and dances around for 8 yards. Thankfully a bad snap sends the ball past Mayfield and the Browns lose 19 yards on that play. Mayfield had all day to throw and throws incomplete to his receiver to end this Browns drive.
Looked like some miscommunication between Fitzpatrick and his receiver as the ball is thrown no where near the intended target. Ballage gets one yard on the run up the middle, no surprise there. And we have another 3 and out as Fitzpatrick missed Durham Smythe.
Odell Beckham gets in on the action and takes a screen for a couple yards and Chubb manages to get the first down on the following run play. After two short plays, Dolphins jump offsides extending the Browns drive, ugh. Baker goes deep to OBJ, touchdown. Browns 14, Dolphins 0.
Now Jakeem Grant is hurt after his kick return. Guess what, Ballage gets one yard on the ensuing run, color me surprised. Ok, Ballage redeems himself as he gets the first down thanks to the throw from Fitzpatrick. After praising him, Ballage loses a yard on the next handoff as this game is already painful to watch with the first quarter coming to an end. Ballage seems to be the focal point of the offense today as he wanted to throw out of the wildcat but runs for 4 yards instead. Fitzpatrick tries to get Gesicki into the action but the ball is deflected at the first down marker. Dolphins try a fake punt but fail miserably as they don’t even get close to the first down.
Browns easily get the first down after two plays and show no signs of slowing down against this Dolphins defense. After a few dink and dunk plays, Browns are in the redzone. Landry proceeds to get touchdown #2. Browns 21, Dolphins 0.
Myles Gaskin seems to have taken over running back duties for this drive. After an incompletion and short run from Albert Wilson, Fitzpatrick extends the drive with a nice scramble. Dolphins finally get a big play thanks to a pass from Fitz to Hurns over the middle putting the Dolphins past midfield and into enemy territory. A few plays later, a Fitz throw goes through the hands of Wilson, off his face mask, into the air where the Browns pick off the pass.
Browns chewing up the clock now with some run plays and short throws to get the Browns past midfield and we are at the two minute warning. Secondary is just getting picked apart and making Mayfield look like the best QB in the league. After driving the ball downfield and thanks to some DPI, Kareem Hunt gets into the endzone on a short run. Browns 28, Dolphins 0.
After getting kickoff, Fitzpatrick drives the offense downfield and actually get some points on before the half thanks to a field goal from Jason Sanders. Browns 28, Dolphins 3.
Second Half Recap
And we are back as the Dolphins will receive the kickoff to begin the second half. Ballage gets the ensuing handoff and takes it up the middle for a few yards but Dolphins can’t do anything and go 3 and out. Also, Mike Gesicki appears to have hurt his leg as he is walking gingerly now.
Browns come out like they did in the first half. Converting for a first down thanks to a big throw to Landry. Something good finally happens to Miami, thanks to a bad throw from Mayfield resulting in a Ryan Lewis interception.
Fitz scrambles on first down for about 5 yards then throws incomplete on second down. Offense comes out in the wildcat formation and Ballage takes the ball up the middle for a Dolphins first down. Fitz throws deep into triple coverage towards Gesicki in the endzone and thankfully the pass is just broken up. Albert Wilson getting involved today in the short passing game as he records another reception. Fitz fires over the middle for Parker for a huge gain setting up the offense in the redzone. In a dreary game, we finally get to witness Mike Gesicki get his first career touchdown pass as the second year tight end continues to improve during this season. Browns 28, Dolphins 10.
Chubb is a machine as he breaks 3 tackles to get a first down. Browns have been destroying the defense on the ground today which sets up the play action for Mayfield who completes to Landry for a first down. Landry gets another first down and is up to 8 receptions now. Defensive line finally gets some pressure up front and force an incompletion, followed by a sack by Charles Harris. The Browns also missed their field goal attempt, meaning the offense gets to takeover now.
Fitz throws 2 incompletions but hits Wilson short of the 3rd down and is also bailed out by a defensive holding to extend the drive. Parker keeps the drive going as he fights for a first down on a short catch and does the exact same thing on the very next play. Fitz can’t find anything on the next play and scrambles for about 5 yards. Patrick Laird gets his first carry of the game and gets 10 yards to put the team close to the endzone. After a sack on first down, Laird drops an easy pass over the middle setting up 3rd down. Fitz does it himself and keeps it to get another Miami Dolphins touchdown and we finally have a game, onto the fourth quarter. Browns 28, Dolphins 17.
The Browns get two quick first downs thanks to Baker throwing for one and keeping on for a short QB sneak. Ryan Lewis is called for a big DPI and sets the Browns up near the redzone. The defense bends but doesn’t break and forces the Browns to go for a field goal. Browns 31, Dolphins 17.
Dolphins finally get a favorable flag on their first play as the defense is called for a DPI. The offense can’t get anything going and have to punt after 3 plays.
On the ensuing Browns drive, Landry goes over 100 yards for the day against this former team. Baker hits Landry again deep into the redzone and the Browns have a chance to put this game away. Mayfield can’t connect with anyone and the Browns are going to have to go for a field goal again. Browns 34, Dolphins 17.
Fitzmagic throws his second interception on the ensuing drive and that will do it for this game barring some miracle.
Chubb gets a huge gain on first and gets the Browns close to the redzone. But for whatever the Browns are still throwing and get picked off, but a penalty lets them keep the ball in the redzone. Chubb completes the drive with a tough run up the middle. Browns 41, Dolphins 17.
Thankfully Fitz is targeting Parker for some garbage time stats for fantasy owners on this drive. Fitzmagic with another long scramble followed by a defensive penalty gets the Dolphins past midfield. Allen Hurns had no one near him the endzone for a 19 yard TD pass from the birthday boy, Fitzmagic. This is also Fitzpatrick’s 200th career touchdown. Browns 41, Dolphins 24.
This roster may be the worst in the league but they have a ton of fight in them. We’ve seen teams roll over and die after that abysmal first half but they kept at it after halftime. It will be interesting to see what this team is like next year at this time with all the resources that the team is expected to use during the offseason.