The late Browns play by play man Nev Chandler famously said before the 1986 AFC Championship game "fasten your seat belts, its gonna be a shootout here at the Lakefront." I never thought the "New Browns" would ever be involved in a game like this. I took my father in law and my boy Ags to the game today. After Derek Anderson's forth TD pass, Ags, a usually excitable guy, was stoic. I looked at him and said "what's with you? why are you so quiet?" He said "I'm just absolutely stunned. Who is this team? Its like the Bizaro world." That was a great call. How is it that the Browns were able to score 51 points against the Bengals, a team that looked very good in beating Baltimore a week ago?
All you have to do is look at the QB - Derek Anderson showed why the Browns brass was so intrigued by him. He threw for 320 and 4 TD's. He was throwing darts all game long, spreading the ball to Joe Jurevicius, Braylon Edwards, and Kellen Winslow. The offensive line was phenomenal, allowing no sacks and giving DA time to exploit the weak Bengals secondary. Braylon abused his former Michigan teammate CB Leon Hall on several occasions, but none was better than the pump and go TD from Anderson in the third. His stutter step along with Anderson's pump had Hall looking for his jock.
So lets get this straight, the Browns scored 51 points; had a 300 yard passer in Anderson; had two 100 yard receivers in Edwards and Winslow; and had a 200 yard rusher in Jamal Lewis. Again, did this really happen? I wish every Browns fan could have been there yesterday. The stadium was as electric as it has ever been. It was by far the most entertaining game I have been to in the new Browns era. The fans deserved it. Now it was all roses yesterday. The defense allowed Carson Palmer to throw for over 400 yards and six touchdown passes. Chad Johnson abused Leigh Bodden to the tune of 11 catches for 2o9 yards, two TD's, and one Dawg Pound leap. Rudi Johnson ran for 118 yards. The Bengals offensive line seemingly pushed the much maligned Browns defensive front back all day long. It seemed as though which ever team scored last would win the game. Luckily for the Browns, Bodden intercepted Palmer on the final drive to preserve the improbable 51-45 win. The teams combined for 96 points and over 1000 yards of offense.
There were no chants of "Brady, Brady." There was no need for them. Anderson was spectacular. His big time performance should silence the Quinn lovers for a few more weeks. What's most upsetting after watching Anderson yesterday is the fact the the Browns brass actually trotted Frye out there last week at all. You think Frye could have ever had a game like this? Not a chance. But he's gone now, and the DA era should last a little longer. Only in the NFL can a team look so bad one week and put up 51 points against a Super Bowl contender the next.