Monday, October 27, 2014

On The Mark 10.27.14: #Browns & #Buckeyes Recap

Browns Do Their Job And Beat The Raiders 23-13
By @MarkW2112

The Cleveland Browns, coming off a very disappointing loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars last week, came back this Sunday and beat a team they were supposed.  The Oakland Raiders are a terrible team and the Browns were able to beat them 23-13 with just enough offense and a defense that continued to improve over the season. Brian Hoyer, Andrew Hawkins and Miles Austin were the stars on offense while Paul Krueger, Joe Haden and Donte Whitner were beasts on defense.

Hoyer, who did struggle again this week, was 19-of-28 for 259 yards and a touchdown.  Hawkins had his best game as a Brown, with 88 passing yards and a touchdown.  While the Raiders defense was able to keep the running game in tact, Ben Tate was able to rush for a touchdown after a fumble recovery within the red zone late in the game.  Billy Cunduff was 3-for-3 on field goal tries, which helped the Browns take a 9-6 lead in to halftime.

The defense were the real stars of the game.  Kruger sacked rookie Derek Carr 3 times, Donte Whitner made a punishing hit on running back Darren McFadden which caused a fumble that shot out of his arms in to Joe Haden's arms who returned it to the 50 yard line which lead to the Browns first touchdown of the game in the third quarter.  Speaking of Haden, he may have had his best game of the year, keeping pace with the receivers he covered and his fumble recovery was huge for the Browns to give them the momentum they needed.

My take: It wasn't pretty, but a wins a win.  The offensive line is struggling without Alex Mack but I do believe as time goes on it will get better once again.  The defense was just awesome tonight, allowing the only touchdown with 7 seconds left in the game during garbage time.  Derek Carr, who was 34-of-54 yards with a touchdown, has a bright future if he is put in to an offensive system that fits him with whoever is the new coach for the Raiders after this season.

Up next: The Browns face another winless team, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, next Sunday at home.

Penn State Puts Up A Fight, But Ohio State Prevails 31-24 In 2 OT

It's never easy playing in Happy Valley for the Buckeyes.  Especially during prime time games as the Penn State Nittany Lion fans bring the noise and "white out" the stadium.  It can be extremely intimidating for any team.  The Ohio State Buckeyes, especially freshman quarterback J.T. Barrett, seemed affected by it all night.  Yet somehow, the Buckeyes defense and Barrett during overtime came away with the victory 31-24 that went to 2 overtimes before the game ended on an incredible sack by Joey Bosa as he pushed running back Akeel Lynch in to Christian Hackenberg.

Urban Meyer and Tom Herman went with a conservative play calling scheme, which gave big yards to Ezekiel Elliot, who had 109 yards on 26 carries and a touchdown.  Barrett added 75 yards rushing and 2 touchdowns, both of which came during overtime.  However, Barrett had a bad game passing the ball, throwing for 79 yards, a touchdown, but 2 interceptions, one a pick 6 and the other which lead to a Penn State score that brought them to within 3 points of the Bucks, 17-14.  The defensive line of the Lions had a great game, busting up running plays, sacking Barrett and pressuring him all game.

The Buckeyes defense were the big stars of the game. Hackenberg did throw for 224 yards and a touchdown but was also intercepted twice, one of those by Eli Apple in the end zone and sacked .  It may have been their best all around game of the season.

My take: J.T. Barrett proved he still has a long way to go yet he proved himself when he needed to in overtime.  Joey Bosa might just be the best defensive lineman in college football and last night was another showcase for his extraordinary talent. Penn State deserves a ton of kudos for their defensive play and making plays on offense when needed.  The Lions fans definitely deserve credit for disrupting the rhythm of the Buckeyes offense all night.  They are definitely some of the best fans in college. But thankfully none of that mattered as the Buckeyes prevailed in the end.

Next game: back in Columbus against the surprising Illinois Illini for another prime time Saturday night game.

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