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Rapid Reaction: Cleveland Browns

12/1/2013



A few early thoughts on the Cleveland Browns' 32-28 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars:

What it means: Rock bottom does not feel good. And rock bottom is losing at home to a 2-9 team. The Browns got the most uplifting play possible from Josh Gordon when he scampered for a 95-yard touchdown, then gave up an 80-yard, game-winning drive to Chad Henne and the Jaguars -- topped by Cecil Shorts faking Joe Haden out of his shoes en route to the game-winning TD catch. Browns fans have put up with a lot. This game ranks as one of the more crushing ones since 1999.

Stock watch: Josh Gordon is one hugely talented wide receiver. Gordon had his second consecutive 200-yard game for the Browns, setting an NFL record for yards in consecutive games. Gordon was a surprise second-round choice by Tom Heckert in the supplemental draft a year ago, and has justified that choice this season. He is growing into one of the NFL's best.

Snap issue: Those who have been around the Browns a long time could not remember center Alex Mack making a real bad shotgun snap. He had one in the fourth quarter against the Jaguars, though, airmailing a snap well over Brandon Weeden's head and into the end zone. Weeden kicked the ball out of the end zone for a safety that gave the Jaguars a 22-21 lead.

Quick change: The end of the first half was as bizarre as any in recent memory. In the final 2:47 the Browns turned the ball over three times, and the Jaguars scored three times. Weeden threw two interceptions and fumbled, and the Jaguars turned those plays into a touchdown and two field goals. That enabled Jacksonville to turn a 14-7 deficit into a 20-14 halftime lead.

What's next: The Browns travel to New England to play the Patriots -- which, of course, means facing Tom Brady.