Mistakes doom Browns in blowout loss to Ravens


Baltimore Ravens linebacker Tyus Bowser (54) sacks Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6), during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Baltimore Ravens linebacker Tyus Bowser (54) sacks Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6), during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)


Baltimore Ravens safety Chuck Clark (36) attempts to intercept the ball as Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) tries to hit it away, during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. Baltimore Ravens linebacker Malik Harrison (40) in on the ground. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)


Baltimore Ravens tight end Mark Andrews (89) catches a touchdown as Cleveland Browns free safety Karl Joseph (42) attempts to tackle, during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)


Baltimore 38, Cleveland 6

Cleveland60006
Baltimore10147738

First Quarter

Bal_Andrews 5 pass from L.Jackson (Tucker kick), 7:41.

Bal_FG Tucker 41, 4:38.

Cle_Njoku 1 pass from Mayfield (kick failed), 1:41.

Second Quarter

Bal_Dobbins 3 run (Tucker kick), 2:53.

Bal_Andrews 9 pass from L.Jackson (Tucker kick), :06.

Third Quarter

Bal_Snead 19 pass from L.Jackson (Tucker kick), 7:48.

Fourth Quarter

Bal_Dobbins 2 run (Tucker kick), 13:00.

A_0.

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CleBal
First downs2023
Total Net Yards306377
Rushes-yards27-13830-107
Passing189284
Punt Returns1-12-26
Kickoff Returns0-02-64
Interceptions Ret.0-01-8
Comp-Att-Int21-39-121-26-0
Sacked-Yards Lost2-212-14
Punts3-45.73-41.7
Fumbles-Lost3-22-1
Penalties-Yards8-807-66
Time of Possession30:0229:58

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INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING_Cleveland, Hunt 13-72, Chubb 10-60, D.Johnson 1-5, Mayfield 2-3, Gillan 1-(minus 2). Baltimore, Jackson 7-45, Ingram 10-29, Dobbins 7-22, Edwards 4-17, Griffin 1-(minus 1), Ricard 1-(minus 5).

PASSING_Cleveland, Mayfield 21-39-1-189. Baltimore, Jackson 20-25-0-275, Griffin 1-1-0-9.

RECEIVING_Cleveland, Landry 5-61, Hunt 4-9, Njoku 3-50, Beckham 3-22, Hooper 2-15, Hodge 1-12, Higgins 1-9, Chubb 1-6, Bryant 1-5. Baltimore, M.Brown 5-101, Andrews 5-58, Snead 4-64, Boykin 3-37, Boyle 2-3, Duvernay 1-12, Ricard 1-9.

MISSED FIELD GOALS_Cleveland, Seibert 41.

BALTIMORE (AP) — Odell Beckham Jr. watched the ball hit his hands, then the ground.

The Browns fell just as easily and quickly.

In a season opener filled with mistakes and looking like so many in previous Cleveland seasons, Beckham’s dropped pass on a crucial third-down play late in the first half of Sunday’s 38-6 loss to the Baltimore Ravens may have been the most costly.

There were plenty to choose from.

“They out-coached us, they outplayed us,” Browns coach Kevin Stefanski said after a painful debut. “We did a lot of things losing teams do. We turned it over three times, didn’t play complementary football. We’ve got a lot to clean up.”

With no margin for error against one of the NFL’s best teams, the Browns made way too many against the Super Bowl-craving Ravens, and Stefanski’s first game with Cleveland went the same way as it did for most of his predecessors.

The Browns fell to 1-20-1 in season openers since the franchise’s rebirth in 1999, and Cleveland is now winless in 16 straight openers — an NFL record it already owned.

For the second year in a row, the opener was a colossal letdown for a Browns team seeking a fresh start. Last season, it was a brutal 30-point loss to Tennessee, and this one was just as bad — maybe even worse since it came against a division opponent.

“Sometimes a wake-up call is good for everybody,” quarterback Baker Mayfield said. “A punch in the mouth and that’s how we should take it.”

Mayfield threw an interception on Cleveland’s first possession, kicker Austin Seibert missed an extra point and field goal — and may soon get the boot himself — and Stefanski’s first gamble backfired badly when he faked the first punt this season.

“That’s on me,” Stefanksi said. “It didn’t work out.”

Little went right for the Browns, and yet despite numerous early issues, they were still within 17-6 and possibly driving for a late score in the second quarter when Beckham, known for his one-handed catches, tried to run before securing Mayfield’s short pass at the Baltimore 20 with 50 seconds left.

A completion would have given the Browns a first down and the chance to carve into the Ravens’ lead. Instead, they had to settle for a field-goal attempt, but Seibert pushed his 41-yard try to the right. Earlier, he clanked his first PAT of 2020 off the left upright.

“I expect him to make those kicks,” said Stefanski.

The Ravens took over and went 69 yards for a touchdown as quarterback Lamar Jackson, who had his way against a Cleveland secondary thinned by injuries, dropped a 9-yarder between Browns linebacker B.J. Goodson and safety Karl Joseph to make it 24-6.

It was halftime. It was over.

The Browns don’t have any time to dwell. They’ll host No. 1 overall pick Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday night.

Stefanski also has some injuries to worry about, the most notable to starting rookie left tackle Jedrick Wills, who went out with a knee injury.

Mayfield spent the offseason trying to put a rough 2019 season — 21 interceptions — behind him. But on Cleveland’s opening drive, defensive end Calais Campbell dropped into coverage, tipped a pass intended for receiver KhaDarel Hodge and cornerback Marlon Humphrey picked off the deflection.

Mayfield finished 21 of 39 for 189 yards, and had a few nice moments. But just as last year, the No. 1 overall pick in 2018 struggled to find chemistry with Beckham, who was targeted 10 times and finished with three catches.

“I have to be better and give him a chance on some of those things,” Mayfield said. “Like the free-play late in the game, just give him a chance. He is a great player so I just need to give him a chance.”

Stefanski and the Browns refused to use the pandemic as an excuse. They didn’t have a normal offseason or any preseason to work out the kinks, but no team did. However, unlike the Ravens, the Browns have a new coach, a new system — and a bunch of old problems.

“The good teams, they don’t let one mistake turn into a bunch,” Mayfield said. “They don’t let it kind of go throughout the whole team. They can nip it in the bud, move forward and fix their mistakes. We can do that. We know that. We practice on doing those things.

“We just have to be better next time. There is no way around it and no excuses. We just have to be better.”

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AP Sports Writer Tom Withers contributed.

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More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL

Baltimore Ravens linebacker Tyus Bowser (54) sacks Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6), during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2020/09/web1_125466482-b949d2aacc274fb09ff0b4408ddca6e4.jpgBaltimore Ravens linebacker Tyus Bowser (54) sacks Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6), during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Baltimore Ravens safety Chuck Clark (36) attempts to intercept the ball as Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) tries to hit it away, during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. Baltimore Ravens linebacker Malik Harrison (40) in on the ground. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2020/09/web1_125466482-2d4773968a8e41d2bc15eca1ccf93d63.jpgBaltimore Ravens safety Chuck Clark (36) attempts to intercept the ball as Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) tries to hit it away, during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. Baltimore Ravens linebacker Malik Harrison (40) in on the ground. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Baltimore Ravens tight end Mark Andrews (89) catches a touchdown as Cleveland Browns free safety Karl Joseph (42) attempts to tackle, during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2020/09/web1_125466482-cf954921681f4451b176ba0e9778bcb8.jpgBaltimore Ravens tight end Mark Andrews (89) catches a touchdown as Cleveland Browns free safety Karl Joseph (42) attempts to tackle, during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, in Baltimore, MD. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Baltimore 38, Cleveland 6

Cleveland 6 0 0 0 6
Baltimore 10 14 7 7 38

First Quarter

Bal_Andrews 5 pass from L.Jackson (Tucker kick), 7:41.

Bal_FG Tucker 41, 4:38.

Cle_Njoku 1 pass from Mayfield (kick failed), 1:41.

Second Quarter

Bal_Dobbins 3 run (Tucker kick), 2:53.

Bal_Andrews 9 pass from L.Jackson (Tucker kick), :06.

Third Quarter

Bal_Snead 19 pass from L.Jackson (Tucker kick), 7:48.

Fourth Quarter

Bal_Dobbins 2 run (Tucker kick), 13:00.

A_0.

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Cle Bal
First downs 20 23
Total Net Yards 306 377
Rushes-yards 27-138 30-107
Passing 189 284
Punt Returns 1-1 2-26
Kickoff Returns 0-0 2-64
Interceptions Ret. 0-0 1-8
Comp-Att-Int 21-39-1 21-26-0
Sacked-Yards Lost 2-21 2-14
Punts 3-45.7 3-41.7
Fumbles-Lost 3-2 2-1
Penalties-Yards 8-80 7-66
Time of Possession 30:02 29:58

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INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING_Cleveland, Hunt 13-72, Chubb 10-60, D.Johnson 1-5, Mayfield 2-3, Gillan 1-(minus 2). Baltimore, Jackson 7-45, Ingram 10-29, Dobbins 7-22, Edwards 4-17, Griffin 1-(minus 1), Ricard 1-(minus 5).

PASSING_Cleveland, Mayfield 21-39-1-189. Baltimore, Jackson 20-25-0-275, Griffin 1-1-0-9.

RECEIVING_Cleveland, Landry 5-61, Hunt 4-9, Njoku 3-50, Beckham 3-22, Hooper 2-15, Hodge 1-12, Higgins 1-9, Chubb 1-6, Bryant 1-5. Baltimore, M.Brown 5-101, Andrews 5-58, Snead 4-64, Boykin 3-37, Boyle 2-3, Duvernay 1-12, Ricard 1-9.

MISSED FIELD GOALS_Cleveland, Seibert 41.