Report card: Cleveland Browns trump Cincinnati Bengals again in Week 16

Cleveland Browns (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Cleveland Browns (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

Grades from the Cleveland Browns 26-18 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals, which pulled the Browns to 7-7-1 in 2018.

The first quarter was, in all intent and purposes, a stalemate as neither offense could do much.

But after an uneventful first quarter, the action started to pick up.

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Mayfield started to find a rythum and moved the offense down the field. A stellar throw on a double reverse by Jarvis Landry brought the sell out crowd to its feet.

The Browns were up at the half 16-0 even though Greg Joseph missed another extra point.

Third quarter was pretty much like the first although the Browns did score. The Bengals were pretty much stagnant. The defense played well with the exception of late in the forth quarter.

Mayfield was 27 of 37, completing 73 percent of his passes. He threw for 283 yards and three touchdowns. He spread the wealth offensively, completing passes to nine wideouts.

Rashard Higgins led the corps, with six catches on seven targets for 60 yards and a touchdown.

In terms of yardage, Breshad Perriman led the Browns with 76 yards, coming on just two catches. He’s been a heckuva find.

Nick Chubb also eclipsed 100 yards en route to joining some rarified air in Browns history.

An “A” all the way.

• The Browns’ defense, led by Myles Garrett, Genard Avery and company, held their own. Although they did acrue penalties along the way on both sides of the ball.

Garrett gave Bengals’ tackle Cordy Glenn trouble all day long. The sack numbers weren’t there, but trust me. He was impacting the game.

Avery had a solid game as well, recording a sack and well as breaking up a pass. Pretty good for a guy who’s not supposed to drop back into coverage.

That last touchdown by the Bengals should be blamed on Greg Williams as once again he played off coverage and was playing not to lose instead of playing to win!

The Bengals were ravaged by defense and the defense did what it was supposed to do. Grade, A.

• Special teams, again, impacted this game negatively. Cleveland had a punt blocked punt and that cost the Browns a touchdown. Add the two-point conversion and all of a sudden the Bengals were only one possession down.

Mayfield luckily hooked up with David Njoku to put it deep in Cincinnati territory and ran the cock out.

Greg Jospeh also doinked one off the upright on a point-after try. This has been the roller coaster rides of all roller coaster rides when it comes to kicking. It can’t be this bad next season, can it?

It’s unbelievable this game came down to one possession. Grade, D.

• As far as the coaches, go, I’ve already taken Gregg Williams to task, as well as special teams Amos Jones.

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But offensively, Freddie Kitchens and the crew carried the day. Grade: A