Patriots Suffer Embarrassing 20-Point Defeat to Eric Mangini’s Browns


Patriots Suffer Embarrassing 20-Point Defeat to Eric Mangini's Browns

Final, Browns 34-14: The Patriots closed out the game in the defeat formation, as Brian Hoyer took a knee in the shadow of his own end zone to erase the game's final 20 seconds. Sunday was a complete disaster for the Patriots, who fell to 6-2.

Fourth quarter, 2:20, Browns 34-14: With the game out of reach, Brian Hoyer replaced Tom Brady, and Eric Wright ripped the ball from Julian Edelman to record an interception. It was Hoyer's first interception in 29 regular-season pass attempts, and moments later, the Browns gave Eric Mangini a Gatorade bath on the sidelines.

Fourth quarter, 2:38, Browns 34-14: The Patriots knew Peyton Hillis would get the ball, and they stacked the box in preparation. But Hillis ran it during all six plays during that possession, gained 60 yards and scored on a 35-yard touchdown run that he bounced to the outside. Hillis has 28 carries for a career-high 181 yards and two touchdowns.

Fourth quarter, 6:37, Browns 27-14: Aaron Hernandez made his second nice touchdown catch of the game, and Wes Welker kicked the extra point. Welker, a lefty, is the team's place kicker because of Stephen Gostkowski's thigh injury. That might really come into play if the Patriots are in position to attempt an onside kick in the next few minutes.

Fourth quarter, 10:45, Browns 27-7: It's one thing to get beat by the Browns, who are no doubt a tough team. But to get throttled by them? Well, that's cause for concern. Phil Dawson's 37-yard field goal has extended the lead, and Peyton Hillis needed less than three quarters to be the first Patriots opponent to rush for 100 yards this season. Oh, and the Browns lead time of possession 32:09-17:06.

End of third quarter, Browns 24-7: Jerod Mayo has been completely out of position on the Browns' two third-down conversions this drive. What's worse, Mayo has been lined up one-on-one with running back Peyton Hillis. If Mayo and Hillis lined up for a race, Mayo would beat him twice over, but Mayo has gotten lost on two huge plays. The Browns have a first-and-10 at the New England 34 after Hillis' latest 29-yard gain.

Third quarter, 3:33, Browns 24-7: The Patriots punted again after Brandon Tate dropped a third-down pass that hit him in the numbers. Tom Brady hasn't exactly been perfect Sunday, but his receivers are killing him with drops. And this isn't the first time this epidemic has reared its head this season. It's hard to imagine the Patriots erasing this deficit without a touchdown on defense or special teams.

Third quarter, 5:53, Browns 24-7: Bill Belichick lost the challenge, and the Patriots are facing their biggest deficit of the season. Do you think they can come back? Rock the vote.

Third quarter, 5:53, Browns 23-7: Colt McCoy scrambled for a 16-yard touchdown run, but Bill Belichick is challenging the ruling. It's going to be close. During the run, Josh Cribbs made one of the blocks of the year, blowing up Brandon Spikes at full speed. And Vince Wilfork is apparently getting his ankle checked out on the sidelines, so that's just more bad news for a nightmarish day for the Patriots.

Third quarter, 12:53, Browns 17-7: Cornerback Kyle Arrington overcame his right leg injury and has returned to the field with the Patriots' defense.

Third quarter, 12:53, Browns 17-7: Zoltan Mesko scooped up another poor snap from Jake Ingram and recovered in time to send away a 42-yard punt. Cleveland takes over at its own 28 after the Patriots stalled out just shy of midfield.

Third quarter, 13:30, Browns 17-7: The Patriots have come out in the no-huddle to shake things up. As predictable as this was, it's a good way to get the offense in sync and the defense on its heels.

Halftime, Browns 17-7: The Patriots never mentioned a word about the Steelers this week, so this wasn't a trap game in that sense. But after winning five consecutive games, you had to wonder if the younger players started believing their own hype during practice. As mentioned earlier, Friday's practice ran 30-45 minutes longer than scheduled, and there's a reason for that. The Patriots came out flat and have killed themselves with a continuous string of mistakes.

Another impact here: With five two-loss teams behind the Patriots in the AFC standings, you know tiebreakers are going to come into play at the end of the season, and AFC record immediately follows head-to-head in tiebreakers between non-divisional teams. So, a loss for the Patriots wouldn't just hurt their momentum, it could be a major difference maker in terms of playoff seedings.

Second quarter, 0:22, Browns 17-7: Rookie tight end Rob Gronkowski is having a very poor day, and he just fumbled the ball on the Cleveland 2-yard line. Gronkowski, per usual, was trying to fight his way forward through two defenders, but he coughed up the ball in the process.

Second quarter, 3:12, Browns 17-7: OK, so on the trick play, the Browns had their offensive linemen standing straight up around the center, who quick-snapped it to Josh Cribbs, who snuck a hand-off to Chansi Stuckey before rolling out to the right. As soon as the Patriots reacted to follow Cribbs, Stuckey ran left and scored. Also, it looked like Kyle Arrington caught his right leg in an awkward position while trying to make the tackle, and he limped off to the bench.

Second quarter, 3:30, Browns 17-7: That was some kind of crazy trick play, and I'm still trying to wrap my brain around it. The result, though, was an 11-yard touchdown run for wide receiver Chansi Stuckey. Patriots cornerback Kyle Arrington suffered an injury while trying to tackle Stuckey, and he spent a couple minutes on the turf.

Second quarter, 8:43, Browns 10-7: Aaron Hernandez caught his first career touchdown pass a day after his 21st birthday. The youngest player in the NFL made a nice, acrobatic, toe-tapping catch in the back of the end zone after hauling in a ball that was batted at the line. Just two plays earlier, though, the Patriots went for it on fourth-and-1 from the Cleveland 24, and Tom Brady hit Sammy Morris for 22 yards after a play-action fake to BenJarvus Green-Ellis, who sold the run to the left (remember that play?).

Second quarter, 13:44, Browns 10-0: The Patriots have really settled in on defense and just forced a three-and-out for the first time in five possessions. Tom Brady has been barking at the offense on the sidelines, so let's see if he's woken them up in time for this possession, which starts at the New England 21.

End of first quarter, Browns 10-0: The Patriots went three-and-out for the second time in three possessions, and Tom Brady is 1-for-6 for 10 yards, and he has misfired on all three third-down attempts. I don't know if I'm reading too much into it, but Brady looked a little down in the locker room after Friday's practice, which ran at least a half hour longer than scheduled. Could he see this coming?

First quarter, 1:24, Browns 10-0: New England's defense held up again, and the offense takes possession at its own 10. Rookie quarterback Colt McCoy throws a good ball, but his reads take awhile.

First quarter, 2:10, Browns 10-0: The big thing with stopping the Browns' run game is winning the battle at the line of scrimmage. Peyton Hillis has to be stopped before he gets through a hole because he's far too much of a monster once he gets into the second and third level of the defense. Hillis already has eight carries for 61 yards and a touchdown.

First quarter, 5:17, Browns 10-0: The Patriots' offense has had a lousy start. Tom Brady has been off, and the running game isn't doing much of anything. Cleveland has it back at its own 20 after the punt.

First quarter, 7:50, Browns 10-0: The Patriots made their own break. Peyton Hillis was credited with a 16-yard run, but every Patriot who was in on the tackle punched at the football, and someone eventually popped it out. Brandon Meriweather recovered at the Patriots' 36-yard line. That's one thing the Patriots have done every time Hillis has run, which makes sense. It takes multiple guys to bring Hillis to the turf, so the extra tacklers are swatting at the ball.

First quarter, 8:00, Browns 10-0: Eric Mangini can afford to be aggressive in this game, and he took advantage of his first opportunity with a fourth-and-1 from the Cleveland 36. Colt McCoy's sneak up the middle was enough to move the chains, and the Browns are screaming with momentum.

First quarter, 10:08, Browns 10-0: The Patriots went three-and-out, and it looked like Zoltan Mesko's punt was partially blocked. An absolute nightmarish start for New England's special teams. This might be the most important first-quarter series for the Patriots' defense this season. It starts at the Cleveland 27.

First quarter, 10:19, Browns 10-0: Logan Mankins started at left guard for New England. Also, Peyton Hillis bounced off of 815 pounds worth of Patriots defensive players on his touchdown run. So, he's strong, as advertised.

First quarter, 11:11, Browns 10-0: The Browns only needed two plays to capitalize on the Patriots' special teams puke job. Peyton Hillis slammed through three Patriots — Brandon Spikes, Rob Ninkovich and Myron Pryor — for a one-yard touchdown run, and Tom Brady will have (at least) a two-possession deficit before even touching the football.

First quarter, 11:47, Browns 3-0: Wow, that was ugly. Phil Dawson's kickoff was short, and Rob Gronkowski called for a fair catch but never came close to the ball. Sammy Morris tried to haul it in after a bounce but misplayed it, and former Patriots special teams ace Ray Ventrone recovered at the New England 19. Poor special teams play there.

First quarter, 11:49, Browns 3-0: The Browns got a 37-yard kickoff return and then gained 39 yards on their first two offensive plays to put Phil Dawson in position to kick a 38-yard field goal. Peyton Hillis, by the way, returned to the field for Cleveland's failed third-down play, which wound up being a nice pass defense for cornerback Jonathan Wilhite.

First quarter, 13:00, 0-0: The Browns' medical staff is looking at Peyton Hillis' foot after his first run of the game went for 18 yards. Hillis jumped over Brandon Meriweather but whacked his foot/shin off Meriweather's helmet and limped off the field.

First quarter, 14:50, 0-0: Josh Cribbs, who is one of the best in the business, returned the opening kickoff to the Cleveland 38. The Browns have some good field position to start it off. Also, linebacker Brandon Spikes is in starting lineup.

1:01 p.m.: And the teams are moments away from kickoff in Cleveland. The Browns won the toss and elected to receive the opening kickoff.

12:18 p.m.: You wanted more details on the Patriots' inactive list? Well, you've got more details on the Patriots' inactive list.

11:37 a.m.: Logan Mankins will be in uniform Sunday for the first time this season. The Patriots announced their inactive list, which includes safety Patrick Chung, safety Jarrad Page, running back Fred Taylor, offensive lineman Rich Ohrnberger, offensive lineman Ryan Wendell, tackle Mark LeVoir, wide receiver Taylor Price and defensive lineman Kyle Love. Wide receiver Matthew Slater returns after missing last week's game with an ankle injury. More details to follow.

11:08 a.m.: Patrick Chung was a game-time decision last week against the Vikings, but he was ruled out Saturday for the Browns game. Even after practicing on a limited basis all week, the Patriots didn't feel comfortable enough with Chung's knee, and that has to be a little concerning. It's obviously not too serious because he is practicing every day, but he can't be improving rapidly enough because he was ruled out earlier than last week.

11:05 a.m.: The inactive list will be announced in about 25 minutes, but we already know about three Patriots who won't be playing. Safety Patrick Chung was ruled out late Saturday afternoon with a knee injury, and running back Fred Taylor and safety Jarrad Page will also miss the game. Three down, five to go.

8 a.m.: The Patriots? trip to Cleveland will serve as a testament to their mettle. Despite the Browns? 2-5 record, they?re a relatively dangerous football team that has already disposed of the defending-champion Saints, and three of their losses have been by just one possession.

Plus, this game is stuck in the middle of six very high-profile matchups against the Dolphins, Ravens, Chargers, Vikings, Steelers and Colts. If the Patriots come out focused and handle their business, it will be another reason to like the way Bill Belichick is driving the pulse of that locker room.

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