Browns shut down a Ravens team that Lamar Jackson desperately missed

Deshaun Watson of the Cleveland Browns
Deshaun Watson and the Browns shut out the Ravens on Saturday afternoon. (Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Saturday’s game in Cleveland is a perfect example of why the Baltimore Ravens should pay Lamar Jackson.

Deshaun Watson and the Cleveland Browns rolled over a Ravens offense that couldn’t do much more than hand the ball off to JK Dobbins. The Browns recorded a 13-3 victory, one that keeps their playoff hopes alive.

The Browns held a 6–3 halftime lead after three combined field goals in the first 30 minutes. Watson found Donovan Peoples-Jones for a 10-yard touchdown late in the third inning to improve them by 10. It was the only touchdown of the game.

The Browns missed a few field goals the rest of the way as the snow started coming down hard, but it didn’t matter. They shut out the Ravens to finish the fourth quarter and take the 10-point victory.

Watson went 18 of 28 for 161 yards in the win, his first as a starter at FirstEnergy Stadium. Nick Chubb had 99 yards on 21 carries and Amari Cooper had 58 receiving yards on four catches.

Almost offensive no-show for Ravens without Lamar Jackson

The Ravens’ offense again struggled without Jackson, who is dealing with a PCL sprain in his left knee. He’s expected back before the end of the regular season, which, if Saturday was any indication, is something the Ravens desperately need after finishing their first game without a touchdown since 2018.

They narrowly escaped the struggling Denver Broncos, when Jackson first went down, and last week against the Pittsburgh Steelers with backup Tyler Huntley.

Huntley went 17 of 30 for 138 yards on Saturday. He threw an interception after reaching the red zone in the third quarter. Baltimore’s only points came from a Justin Tucker 53-yard field goal in the first half. They could have had more, but Tucker missed one just before half time and then got one blocked to start the fourth.

The only upside to Raven was Dobbins, who had 125 rushing yards on 13 carries. That is not enough to win competitions sustainably.

Jackson is in the final year of his rookie deal with the Ravens and has yet to renew the franchise. He reportedly turned down a deal worth around $250 million before the season, opting to bet on himself in his contract year. If a deal isn’t reached this coming off-season, the Ravens could use a franchise tag on him to keep him in Baltimore next fall.

The former MVP, for better or for worse, is key to the Ravens’ offense. Without him around, the Browns took full advantage of their third win in four games.

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