5 Impactful Plays and Players Film Review: Week 10 Baltimore/Browns Game

November 16, 2023

Tony Camino

Impactful Plays from Browns’ Game Against Ravens in Week 10

Best Plays In Browns Thrilling 33-31 Win At Baltimore

Week 10 at Baltimore confirmed the guts and fight that this team has in them, as things weren’t going their way for a good chunk to start. After a pick-six that had the game feeling eerily similar to Week 2 at Pittsburgh, the Browns got the ball for their first drive in the second half down 24-9, right after Odell Beckham Jr. took one 40 yards for a touchdown. It seemed like overcoming the injuries to the top three tackles was going to be too much as the Browns got off to yet another slow start. This team is more resilient than any other Browns team in my lifetime, however, and they rallied behind their quarterback with a high ankle sprain and fractured throwing shoulder to complete an amazing comeback. Here are five big plays from the Browns win over the Ravens in Week 10.

Ravens’ Mesh Rail

When you fall behind 24-9, it likely means a lot went wrong to get to that point. The Ravens came out swinging and almost had another big play that might’ve put the game out of reach in the first half. The Browns have continued to struggle to defend the running back rail route out of the backfield every week, and the Ravens nearly took advantage for a huge touchdown.

The Browns are in man coverage here with Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah as the hole player and Juan Thornhill playing deep on the backend. The Ravens run one of the most common plays in the NFL, especially against man coverage, mesh rail, where two drag routes cross each other with a middle sit route, combined with a rail route out of the backfield from the running back. We’ve seen teams hit on this exact route multiple times this year and teams seemingly try it once every week.

JOK does a great job recognizing the traffic from the drag routes is going to pick Martin Emerson and leave a man wide open, so he abandons his role as the hole player to cover the receiver and Emerson takes over his role. The biggest issue is it’s another situation where teams get a speedy running back out in space one-on-one with Sione Takitaki, and Keaton Mitchell has him beat for a touchdown. Lamar Jackson puts this ball right on the money, but Mitchell drops the ball luckily.

While the defense has been stellar through nine games, this play and this specific route from the running back have continued to give them issues. They will need to find better answers going forward or teams are going to continue to attack our slower linebackers in space.

Tillman Split Zone

When Donovan Peoples-Jones was traded, the two biggest questions on my end were with the depth in that room in case of injury, but more importantly, can anyone replicate the role he had as an inline blocker in run plays? Cedric Tillman had a great day as a blocker, using his big frame on multiple occasions, such as laying out Kyle Van Noy.

The Browns are running split zone here, which is becoming one of their go-to run plays. The linemen are zone blocking to their right, while Tillman leaks across the formation to pick up the first man off the edge, who is Jadeveon Clowney in this case. This isn’t something many receivers are willing to do or even able to do, as he’s smaller than Clowney and Clowney is usually blocked by a big offensive tackle.

Tillman doesn’t knock him back but lays a great block on Clowney to allow this play to have a chance. The rest of the line does a decent job on this play as it goes for a nice chunk of seven yards, but if Geron Christian can climb to the second level and hold his block better, it might go for 20 plus.

While Tillman is yet to find his footing producing in the passing game, he’s shown he can do what DPJ was asked to do so often in this offense. Kevin Stefanski loves to bring receivers in line to pin block and run split zone, and this adds another wrinkle to the run game. Teams don’t usually expect receivers to be asked to block defensive ends, and being able to run this variation of split zone will allow the Browns to continue working one of their best run plays this season.

Myles Garrett Massive Sack On Third Down

Myles Garrett tends to find himself on here at least once every week thanks to his game-changing plays on a consistent basis. Right after combining for half a sack on the play prior to nearly knocking the Ravens out of field goal range, they face a third-and-long with a long field goal on the horizon.

The Browns up front are showing a double mug front, where both linebackers are up at the line of scrimmage. Teams do this to cause confusion with the offensive line and to create havoc in the backfield. The two backers end up dropping back into coverage, while Za’Darius Smith and Ogbo Okoronkwo run a stunt on the left side.

The Ravens handle the stunt very well, but Garrett is left isolated with the right tackle. He throws the offensive lineman like a rag doll and brings Jackson to the ground to knock the Ravens out of field goal range.

Looking at how the game turned out, this play likely saved three points and contributed greatly to the Browns finishing this one off. Garrett continues to impress every week, and he is starting to run away with the Defensive Player of the Year award. He’s going to have to keep making impacts leading this defense to carry the Browns the rest of the season.

Huge Completion On 2nd & 19

The Browns rallied, and they finally got the ball back with five minutes left down a point with a chance to take the lead. After both tackles were beaten on the prior play leading to a sack, the Browns were faced with an unfortunate second down and long situation.

The Ravens are playing a form of cover six here, where one side of the field is playing cover two techniques, and the other side is playing cover four techniques. Against this coverage on the deep-half side, deep curls are usually the best point of attack and exactly what Amari Cooper is running. The left side of the play’s route spacing was very suspect here, and the Ravens bracket Cooper to try and force the ball elsewhere.

Watson sees the coverage they are in and knows the deep curl should have a shot. Because of the second defender right on Cooper’s hip, this ball has to be placed in the perfect spot to be completed. Watson anticipates the deep curl and puts this ball right on the money away from two defenders for a massive completion late in the game.

If this ball is incomplete or the Browns only get a couple of yards, they would’ve been faced with a third-and-long situation and likely wouldn’t have marched down the field to win the game. Watson and Cooper are the team’s big-time connection, and this is a great combination by the two of them to come through in a huge moment.

Power With a Late Push

Right after the huge scramble from Watson, the Browns were on the brink of field goal range while managing the clock perfectly. If they could have a few successful runs, they would eat the rest of the clock and set up a game-winning chip shot. They run power here, which has all the linemen blocking to their left while the backside guard pulls and kicks out the defensive end on the play side.

Joel Bitonio starts this play beautifully, pulling across and opening the initial lane for Jerome Ford to run through. There isn’t a ton of space for Jerome Ford to navigate but he does a great job reading his blockers and working through traffic to have a nice gain on first down. The Browns, again, could’ve done better getting to the second level to open up the chance for a bigger run, but five to seven-yard chunks are always a good thing on early downs.

Right as Ford appears to be getting tackled, the entirety of the offensive line, David Njoku, and even Elijah Moore hustle in and start pushing the pile to gain a huge extra chunk on this play. The execution to start was very solid, and then the pure effort and determination from the rest of the team was evident, as they really imposed their will on the Ravens here.

This play will be remembered by Browns’ fans for a long time, as it shows effort and toughness to the max. Despite everything that happened in this game and all the tough injuries to the offense, they kept fighting and just overpowered a team that has notoriously bullied them in the past. This felt like a real changing of the tide moment, where the Browns truly showed they aren’t the same team that would be pushed over like in years past.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

If you're a fan of Cleveland sports and want to stay up-to-date with the latest news, scores, and insights on your favorite teams, signing up for the Cleveland sports newsletter is a no-brainer.

Copyright © 2024 Believe In The Land

threads icon