Monday Night Football | Phil Dawson helps give Buffalo the boot
It turns out the Cleveland Browns aren't quitters, after all. And they have Phil Dawson to thank for a wild victory. Dawson capped a five-field-goal...
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — It turns out the Cleveland Browns aren't quitters, after all. And they have Phil Dawson to thank for a wild victory.
Dawson capped a five-field-goal outing by hitting a career-long 56-yarder with 1:39 remaining to give the Browns a 29-27 victory over the reeling Buffalo Bills on Monday night.
Cleveland snapped a two-game skid and rallied to avoid wasting a 13-point lead for a third consecutive time.
The Bills (5-5) had a chance to win with a clutch kick of their own, but Rian Lindell — a former Seahawk and Washington State Cougar — missed a 47-yard attempt with 38 seconds left.
"Yeah, you have to make it. It's ridiculous," said a dejected Lindell, who connected from 26 and 31 yards earlier in the game. "I missed my line. You have to make those."
It was a morale-boosting outcome for the Browns (4-6), who appeared on the verge of unraveling after running back Jamal Lewis accused teammates of quitting during a 34-30 loss to Denver on Nov. 6.
Buffalo has lost four in a row and five of six, looking nothing like the team that got off to a 4-0 start. Trent Edwards endured another sloppy performance, tossing three interceptions in Buffalo's first four possessions.
Edwards' 1-yard sneak gave the Bills a 27-26 lead with 2:25 left in the fourth, but Cleveland responded with a six-play, 28-yard drive that stalled on the Bills' 39 when Braylon Edwards couldn't hold on to a Brady Quinn pass at the right sideline. On fourth down, Dawson produced the winning points.
Quinn earned his first victory in his second career start; he was 14 of 36 for 185 yards.
Backup running back Jerome Harrison of Washington State scored on an electric 72-yard run on the first play of the fourth to put the Browns up 23-13, but later suffered a hamstring injury. Edwards had eight catches for 104 yards.
Cleveland's defense also showed up, limiting the Bills to 334 yards. That's a significant improvement after it surrendered 564 yards in the loss to Denver — and 993 in its previous two games combined.
Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company
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