Browns find positives in heartbreaking loss

By TOM WITHERS - AP Sports Writer
    2013-12-09 16:53

BEREA, Ohio (AP) - Browns coach Rob Chudzinski didn't point a finger at anyone but his own players.

A day after an epic collapse in New England, Chudzinski refused to blame officials who called two questionable penalties against the Browns in the closing minutes as the Patriots rallied from a 12-point deficit for an improbable 27-26 win.

''Anything can happen in a game and it did yesterday,'' Chudzinski said Monday. ''We have to make the plays and take advantage of the opportunities we have to win those kind of football games.''

Outplaying a Patriots team with so much more on the line, the Browns (4-9) built a 26-14 lead with 2:39 left before everything fell apart.

Tom Brady, frazzled for three quarters, threw two touchdown passes - the second set up by an iffy pass interference call in the end zone on Cleveland rookie Leon McFadden - in the last 61 seconds. The Patriots recovered their first onside kick since 1995 to stun the Browns, who lost their fourth straight and seventh in eight games.

Following the heartbreaker, a few Browns players felt wronged.

''I feel like we got robbed a little bit,'' linebacker Paul Kruger said.

Chudzinski was asked if referee Jerome Boger and his crew were the worst he has seen.

''I wouldn't say that,'' he said. ''We can only control what we can control and if we focus on the things that we can't, then we've given up all of our ability to do what we can do, and we put it in somebody else's hands or we blame somebody else. We're just not going to operate that way.''

Chudzinski chose to focus on the positives, and there were plenty for the Browns: Quarterback Jason Campbell's interception-free, 391-yard performance. Another monster game by wide receiver Josh Gordon.

But it was impossible to overlook the ways Cleveland imploded.

On Brady's 2-yard TD pass to Julian Edelman with 1:38 left, Browns rookie cornerback Jordan Poyer was penalized for unnecessary roughness. The officials felt Poyer hit Edelman in the helmet, but TV replays showed his hit was to the wide receiver's shoulder area.

Chudzinski said the officials told him the 15-yard personal foul, assessed on the ensuing kickoff, was for ''contact to the head.''

Is that what it looked like on film?

''Hard to see,'' Chudzinski said.

With the kickoff moved to the 50, Patriots kicker Steve Gostkowski dribbled his onside kick up the middle. The loose ball was recovered by New England after it bounced off Browns running back Fozzy Whitaker.

Chudzinski said the Browns were initially in an alignment to protect against a kick toward the sideline. As Gostkowski approached and struck the ball, Cleveland's ''hands team'' alertly slid toward the middle.

''On the middle bunt, which they've shown before and done before, as they start coming in and their guys start converging into the middle, we slide and go, and you go get the ball in that case. It was a great kick for that type of kick. We had an opportunity. We just weren't able to come up with the ball.''

Brady took it from there.

It's been that way for too long for the Browns. Close, not good enough.

Chudzinski, though, believes his team, loaded with inexperienced players, will be better for days like the one in Foxborough, Mass.

''Experience is a great teacher and the things that we can take from this game and build on are that we can go toe to toe with anybody in this league,'' he said. ''I see the light. I'm encouraged by our team and how they continue to work and move forward and build on the things that we're doing.''

NOTES: Chudzinski said RB Willis McGahee is following the league's protocol on head injuries after sustaining a concussion. ... Browns LG John Greco suffered a sprained knee. ... Chudzinski doesn't feel safety T.J. Ward's low hit on Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski, who suffered torn knee ligaments, is a product of the league's new rules. ''I think he was trying to get Gronkowski down on the ground,'' Chudzinski said. ''A big guy coming at you that way is tough to get on the ground so I don't know that it has to do with the rules other than trying to get the guy on the ground. Certainly, we feel terrible about that (injury). He's a great player, and (we) hope that he has a speedy recovery.''


NFL website: http://www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Arian FosterOct 6 07:52p

Houston Texans RB Arian Foster (groin) was limited in practice Tuesday, Oct. 6.

Latavius MurrayOct 6 03:32p

Oakland Raiders RB Latavius Murray still has the confidence of head coach Jack Del Rio, despite a rough outing in Week 4 against the Chicago Bears. Murray accounted for [ More ]

Andrew LuckOct 6 03:22p

Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck (shoulder) does not have a partial shoulder subluxation, as had been reported previously, according to a source. Head coach Chuck Pagano said he heard [ More ]

Sammy WatkinsOct 6 02:13p

Buffalo Bills general manager Doug Whaley said WR Sammy Watkins (calf) will play in Week 5 against the Tennessee Titans 'fingers crossed.'

Dan HerronOct 6 02:13p

Free-agent RB Dan Herron (Colts) was signed by the Buffalo Bills Tuesday, Oct. 6. TE MarQueis Gray (forearm) was placed on the Reserve/Injured list.

Daniel FellsOct 6 01:52p

New York Giants TE Daniel Fells (ankle) had surgery this week on his ankle and was diagnosed with MRSA, which is a very serious condition.

Roddy WhiteOct 6 01:42p

Atlanta Falcons WR Roddy White could be open to a trade due to a declining role with the Falcons.

Devin HesterOct 6 01:32p

Atlanta Falcons WR Devin Hester (toe) was placed on the short-term Reserve/Injured list Tuesday, Oct. 6.

Fred JacksonOct 6 01:22p

Seattle Seahawks RB Fred Jackson (ankle) is dealing with a high ankle sprain, according to head coach Pete Carroll.

Eric EbronOct 6 12:32p

Updating an earlier report, Detroit Lions TE Eric Ebron (knee) had an MRI reveal no structural damage in his left knee. His status is to be determined for Week 5.

Markus WheatonOct 6 12:22p

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Markus Wheaton (ankle) looks dramatically improved from his ankle injury and has a good chance to play in Week 5 against the San Diego Chargers.

Eric EbronOct 6 11:52a

Detroit Lions TE Eric Ebron (knee) had X-rays on his left knee, which were negative. He'll have an MRI as well.

Connor BarthOct 6 10:43a

Free-agent PK Connor Barth (Buccaneers) has re-signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tuesday, Oct. 6, as he beat out other kickers to replace PK Kyle Brindza. Brindza was released.

Caleb SturgisOct 6 10:22a

Philadelphia Eagles PK Caleb Sturgis won't be replaced after missing a field goal and an extra point in Week 4, according to head coach Chip Kelly. 'We're going to [ More ]

Steve SmithOct 6 09:52a

Baltimore Ravens WR Steve Smith (back) is day to day and hasn't been ruled out for Week 5, according to WR Kamar Aiken.

Karlos WilliamsOct 6 09:02a

Buffalo Bills RB Karlos Williams (concussion) sustained a concussion in Week 4, and his status is uncertain against the Tennessee Titans in Week 5.

Zach HockerOct 6 08:33a

New Orleans Saints PK Zach Hocker could be in danger of losing his job as the Saints are trying out kickers Tuesday, Oct. 6.

Russell WilsonOct 6 01:22a

Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson completed 20 of his 26 pass attempts for 287 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions in the Week 4 game against the Detroit Lions [ More ]

Thomas RawlsOct 6 01:22a

Seattle Seahawks RB Thomas Rawls saw a lion's share of the carries against the Detroit Lions in Week 4 Monday, Oct. 5, running for 48 yards on 17 carries [ More ]

Matthew StaffordOct 6 12:42a

Detroit Lions QB Matthew Stafford completed 24 of his 35 pass attempts for 203 yards, no touchdowns and no interceptions in the Week 4 game Monday, Oct. 5, against the Seattle Seahawks.

Ameer AbdullahOct 6 12:42a

Detroit Lions RB Ameer Abdullah carried 13 times for just 33 yards in the Week 4 game against the Seattle Seahawks Monday, Oct. 5, and he added two receptions [ More ]

Calvin JohnsonOct 6 12:42a

Detroit Lions WR Calvin Johnson had seven receptions for 56 yards in the Week 4 game against the Seattle Seahawks, but he was also credited with a lost fumble [ More ]

Andrew LuckOct 5 09:22p

Updating a previous report, Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck (shoulder) could be on target to play in the Week 5 game against the Houston Texans Thursday, Oct. 8, as [ More ]

Andrew LuckOct 5 07:52p

Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck (shoulder) is 'trending in the right direction' to return against the Houston Texans in Week 5 Thursday, Oct. 8, after taking part in the [ More ]

Marshawn LynchOct 5 07:32p

Seattle Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch (hamstring) was able to run during pregame warmups Monday, Oct. 5, and appears to have a good chance to play in the Week 5 game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Alec OgletreeOct 5 07:02p

Updating a previous report, St. Louis Rams LB Alec Ogletree (ankle) suffered a fracture ankle during the team's Week 4 game. He is scheduled to undergo surgery and may [ More ]

Sean LeeOct 5 06:42p

Dallas Cowboys LB Sean Lee (concussion) is feeling better but will have to pass all of his concussion tests before he is cleared to play again, according to head coach Jason Garrett.

Lance DunbarOct 5 06:42p

Dallas Cowboys RB Lance Dunbar (knee) will miss the rest of the 2015 season because of a torn anterior cruciate ligament he suffered in Week 4. He scheduled [ More ]

Ronnie BrownOct 5 05:32p

Free-agent RB Ronnie Brown (Chargers) re-signed with the San Diego Chargers Monday, Oct. 5, according to a source. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Andrew LuckOct 5 05:12p

Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck (shoulder) is expected to play in the Week 5 game against the Houston Texans Thursday, Oct. 8. Luck has a slightly separated throwing shoulder [ More ]

Sammy WatkinsOct 5 04:42p

Buffalo Bills WR Sammy Watkins' (calf) status for the Week 5 game against the Tennessee Titans is uncertain at this point, according to head coach Rex Ryan. 'He looked [ More ]

Jordan ReedOct 5 04:42p

Washington Redskins TE Jordan Reed's (concussion, knee, ankle) head injury is a real concern, according to head coach Jay Gruden. Reed has a long history of head injuries dating [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
Player Notes:
Forum Posts:

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group