Final

Browns 10

(0-3, 0-1 away)

Ravens 28

(2-0, 2-0 home)

Coverage: CBS

4:15 PM ET, September 21, 2008

M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, MD 

1 2 3 4 T
CLE 0 10 0 010
BAL 0 7 21 028

Top Performers

Passing: J. Flacco (BAL) - 129 YDS, 2 INT

Rushing: L. McClain (BAL) - 17 CAR, 66 YDS, 2 TD

Receiving: D. Mason (BAL) - 4 REC, 42 YDS

Ravens lock in on defense, force Anderson into mistakes to roll Browns

Associated Press

BALTIMORE -- The Baltimore Ravens were struggling to score, and then Derek Anderson came to the rescue.

Unfortunately for the Cleveland Browns, Anderson is their quarterback.

Fast Facts

• Derek Anderson has a 43.5 passer rating this season, worst in the NFL among QB with at least two starts.

• The Browns are 8-24 against their AFC North rivals dating back to 2003.

• Ed Reed returned an interception for a TD, his fourth interception return for a touchdown in his career.

-- ESPN research

Baltimore turned two of Anderson's interceptions into a pair of touchdowns during a 50-second span of the third quarter, and the Ravens further damaged an already agonizing season for the Browns with a 28-10 victory Sunday.

Ed Reed returned one of the interceptions 32 yards for a score, and Le'Ron McClain scored his first two NFL touchdowns on a pair of 1-yard runs -- both during a 21-point third quarter that enabled Baltimore (2-0) to turn a 10-7 halftime deficit into an 18-point lead.

"I knew it was just a question of when," said Baltimore linebacker Terrell Suggs, referring to the big plays by the defense.

Anderson had another trying day in an effort to generate some offense for Cleveland, which was picked by many to be a contender in the AFC North. Anderson went 14-for-37 for 125 yards, was sacked five times and threw three interceptions.

"We didn't execute and pretty much gave them 14 points off turnovers," he said. "I'm just frustrated. I expect more out of myself."

The Browns (0-3) have scored only two touchdowns in their three defeats. The last team to reach the playoffs after losing its first three games was the 1998 Buffalo Bills.

"I don't know whether we're trying to live on the success we had last year, but it's not working," coach Romeo Crennel said. "So we're going to have to do a lot better, or this thing is really going to get away from us."

Back from a knee injury, Willis McGahee rushed for 64 yards and a touchdown for the Ravens, who were forced to take last week off when Hurricane Ike postponed their game at Houston.

Maybe it was the layoff, but Baltimore looked sluggish in falling behind 10-7 at halftime. But the Ravens took the lead for good by taking advantage of a turnover on the Browns' first possession of the third quarter.

Kellen Winslow was hit by Ray Lewis while trying to catch a pass, and Chris McAlister plucked the ball from the air and took the interception to the Cleveland 12. Four plays later, McClain scored.

Reed then stepped in front of tight end Steve Heiden, caught Anderson's pass and sprinted into the end zone for his fourth career interception return for a touchdown. Reed said he saw the play before, then pounced when the Browns ran it again.

"[Defensive coordinator] Rex Ryan told us to be patient and let the game come to us," Reed said. "Know what they are doing, then strike!"

Later in the quarter, a 21-yard punt return by Jim Leonhard and a roughness penalty on Mike Adams gave Baltimore the ball at the Cleveland 35. The five-play drive ended with a touchdown run by McClain.

"In the second half we played poor football," Crennel said. "We got penalties and gave them scores on turnovers."

Asked about the 0-3 start, former Ravens running back Jamal Lewis (56 yards on 12 carries) said, "It's pathetic. I don't know what else to say."

The victory kept the Ravens unbeaten under first-year coach John Harbaugh. Last year, Baltimore lost twice to Cleveland and finished 5-11 for coach Brian Billick.

Ravens safety Dawan Landry was taken from the field by a cart in the second quarter after being struck in the helmet with a knee by Jamal Lewis. Landry was trying to make a tackle on the play, and immediately slumped to the ground.

Landry never lost consciousness and had movement in all his extremities, according to Ravens orthopedist Leigh Ann Curl. A CT scan at a nearby hospital indicated he was OK.

Ravens rookie quarterback Joe Flacco completed his first seven passes, hitting five different receivers for 74 yards before throwing his first career interception. D'Qwell Jackson's pickoff set up a 19-yard touchdown pass from Anderson to Jerome Harrison.

The score, on the first play of the second period, ended Cleveland's run of seven straight quarters without a touchdown.

Game notes


In their 13 years of existence, the Ravens are 29-5 when scoring a defensive touchdown. ... Anderson has yet to pass for 200 yards this season; he threw for at least 200 yards in 11 games last year. ... Browns LB Shantee Orr left with a concussion in the third quarter and did not return.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
CLE
BAL
1st Downs1121
Passing 1st downs
77
Rushing 1st downs
313
1st downs from penalties
11
3rd down efficiency
3-133-11
4th down efficiency
0-02-3
Total Plays5764
Total Yards169273
Yards per play3.04.3
Total Drives1312
Passing99122
Comp-Att
14-3713-19
Yards per pass
2.46.1
Interceptions thrown
32
Sacks-Yards Lost
4-261-7
Rushing70151
Rushing Attempts
1644
Yards per rush
4.43.4
Red Zone (Made-Att)1-23-5
Penalties9-655-40
Turnovers32
Fumbles lost
00
Interceptions thrown
32
Defensive / Special Teams TDs01
Possession22:1237:48

Passing Leaders

CLEC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Anderson14/371253.4134-26
BALC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Flacco13/191296.8021-7

Rushing Leaders

CLECARYDSAVGTDLG
Lewis12564.7014
Wright11111.0011
BALCARYDSAVGTDLG
McClain17663.9217
McGahee15644.3110

Receiving Leaders

CLERECYDSAVGTDLG
Edwards3279.0017
Lewis3217.009
BALRECYDSAVGTDLG
Mason44210.5019
Heap23216.0017

Scoring Summary

SECOND QUARTERCLEBAL
cleTD15:00Jerome Harrison, 19 yd pass from Derek Anderson (Phil Dawson kick is good)
Drive info: 7 plays, 52 yds, 3:14
70
balTD6:44Willis McGahee, 5 yd run (Matt Stover kick is good)
Drive info: 7 plays, 43 yds, 4:15
77
cleFG1:08Phil Dawson 38 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 13 plays, 55 yds, 5:36
107
THIRD QUARTERCLEBAL
balTD11:20Le'Ron McClain, 1 yd run (Matt Stover kick is good)
Drive info: 4 plays, 12 yds, 2:17
1014
balTD10:31Ed Reed, 32 yd interception return (Matt Stover kick is good)
Drive info: 3 plays, 4 yds, 0:50
1021
balTD5:41Le'Ron McClain, 1 yd run (Matt Stover kick is good)
Drive info: 5 plays, 35 yds, 3:08
1028