Late in the first quarter, the Browns had the ball and a 13-0 lead at Cincinnati.
The Bengals, on the strength of their special teams and defense, scored 31 second-quarter points to take a 31-13 halftime lead over the Browns.
Browns punter Spencer Lanning had a pair of punts blocked in the second period. The first traveled all of nine yards, setting up the Bengals at the Cleveland 28. The Bengals would capitalize, with quarterback Andy Dalton hitting Mohamed Sanu for a six-yard touchdown to give Cincinnati a 14-13 lead.
Later in the quarter, the Bengals would bring back a blocked punt for a touchdown, with second-year safety Tony Dye — promoted from the practice squad on Saturday — scoring on a 24-yard return, putting the Bengals up eight.
Finally, the Bengals tacked a field goal at the end of half, which was set up by a 27-yard Adam Jones punt return.
The Browns raced to the early lead as the Bengals’ offense sputtered. Cornerback Joe Haden intercepted a pair of Andy Dalton passes. The first set up a field goal. The second was taken back for a score by Haden, one of the game’s best at his position.
That put the Browns up 13-0, and at that point, Cleveland’s quest to sweep Cincinnati was looking strong. However, the Bengals have rallied, and the Browns have faltered.