The following is a guest post from regular reader James Craven of The O Files, who has kindly written a special edition of What the Losers Are Saying. This Thanksgiving Eve special features the best quotes from Cleveland Browns blogs after managing to lose a 24-3 to the Lions, and subsequently the game 38-37. Enjoy!
On my site (http://jamescraven-theofiles.blogspot.com), I had termed that the Cleveland Browns-Detroit Lions game would be “A pillow fight.” It turned out those were with lead filled pillows. In the worst case scenario ever put up to make Verne Lundquist scream “WHAT ARE THEY DOING?!”, Cleveland held a 24-3 lead midway through the first quarter, and then the Lions roared back (pun intended). Thanks to a pass interference call in the end zone on a hail mary as time expired and hurt Lions QB and savior for the next few years Matt Stafford, the Browns called time out just as there was a Dante Culpepper sighting! The time out allowed Stafford to return to flip a one-yard pass to Brandon Pettigrew on the untimed play, and Jason Hanson kicked the winning PAT to give the Lions the 38-37 win
I am sure that every Browns fan, hell every football fan, was scratching his head after today’s thrilling game at Ford Field in Detroit between our hapless Brownies and the pathetic Lions. It was probably the most exciting game of the day (which says a lot given that two others were decided in overtime).
Amazingly, the Browns found a way to lose thanks to massive brain cramps by two people: Hank Poteat and Eric Mangini. Poteat was called for pass interference on what should have been the final play of the football game to give our Browns their second win of the season, 37-31. That gave Detroit another down with zero time left on the clock. Rookie Lions’ QB Stafford was injured on the play which drew the flag, thus, an awkward and ice-cold back-up QB Daunte Culpepper had to enter the game for Detroit. So what did Mangini do – he called timeout! HE CALLED TIMEOUT! When play resumed, Stafford came back to throw his fifth TD of the contest to vault the Lions to the win, 38-37. CAN YOU SAY PUKE?
439 yards of offense for the Browns. Very good play from Brady Quinn. Finally, some actual points. And the defense does nothing to help. Nothing. After going up nearly three touchdowns early in the game, we allowed the Lions to crawl back and win the game, thanks especially to Poteat and Mangini on the final two plays.
Absolutely amazing. What else can you say?
Now, over to dawgsbynature.com for Chris Pokorny’s goats of the game awards:
- Hank Poteat: As frustrated as I was after the pass interference flag was thrown on Matthew Stafford’s heave to the end zone, the blame ultimately falls on veteran Hank Poteat. This wasn’t the typical Hail Mary heave where eight different players are all colliding with each other in an attempt to catch or knock the ball down. Near Poteat, there might have been three players. As the ball approached the end zone, the officials had a clear view of Poteat who made contact with Bryant Johnson. If Johnson had been facing the ball, there probably wouldn’t have been a call. But, Poteat kept his back to the line of scrimmage, which is just begging for a flag in the NFL.
- Chris Jennings: Jennings dropped what was probably the best play by a Browns quarterback this season. Quinn pump faked short to the sideline, and the second that Jennings had a step on his man, Quinn lofted a perfectly thrown football — all Jennings had to do was make the basket catch in stride and continue another five yards for the score. Instead, he dropped it, and the Browns could only muster a field goal.
And last, and certainly least, BrownsGab.com‘s Matt Loede on the aftermath:
The Browns are the worst team in the league, it’s now official. This after Sunday’s unreal setback, 38-37 to the Detroit Lions in a game that they basically had won more than once. First, they scored a franchsie high 24 first quarter points to lead at one point 24-3, only to see that go quickly away. Then, they were up 37-31 when Matt Stafford heaved a desperate pass towards the end zone with no time on the clock, and Hank Poteat was called for pass interference, which gave the Lions the ball at the one with one last play. Of course the defense allowed a Stafford to Brandon Pettigrew TD pass to end the complete collapse at 38-37.
“Once the quarterback rotated out of the pocket and they were in the end zone, you try to force the receiver out of bounds,” Poteat said. “That’s what I tried to do.”
Yeah, and in the end, he was flagged for it, and the Browns couldn’t do anything, even after a time out, to stop Stafford, who had five TD passes. The first rookie to do that since some guy named Ray Buivid for the Bears in 1937.
“It was more a function of wanting to make sure we had the right personnel and we wanted to take a look at what they were going to do,” Mangini said about calling the time out on the last play. “We had the timeout so at that point I thought it was a good idea to use it, look at it, and get the guys in spots we thought they needed to be in.”
Yeah, and it did nothing, as the Browns fell on a play fake. Overall, Stafford was was 26 of 43 for 422 yards with the five TD’s. It wiped out the best offensive day of the year for the Browns, who watched Brady Quinn go 21 of 33 for 304 yards with four TD’s. In the end, it didn’t matter.
“I’m just so upset that my team fought so hard late in the game to put us in a situation to win and it came down to the penalty that I caused,” Poteat said.
As the dearly departed His Royal Highness (sports radio host) King Pete Franklin used to whine back in the day at the old 3WE on The Mistake by the Lake, “Poor Brownies.” Right now, he’s probably laughing in his grave about this.
Editor’s Note: Cleveland is not only the worst team in the league but they have got to be the dumbest. Calling a timeout when you could’ve had Culpepper and not Stafford in the game? Throwing on 3rd down when Detroit had no timeouts? These are definitely down times for the Browns and there is almost no hope in sight for them. Just when you think they can win, they manage to find a new way to lose.
Thanks to JC for this edition of WTLAS, you put up a great effort. Happy Thanksgiving everyone! No live blog of any football on Thursday, but we will see you this weekend.