Brandon Allen wins first start 24-19 as Browns stall in red zone


The Browns had five red zone possessions. Two other possessions ended at the Denver 21 and Denver 28.

They scored 19 points.

That wasn’t enough.

The Broncos, behind a quarterback making his first career start, beat the Browns 24-19.

It was Denver’s third victory in its past five games, giving the Broncos a 3-6 record. The Browns lost their fourth consecutive game to fall to 2-6 on yet another disappointing day.

The Browns settled for field goals on four consecutive drives in the first half, on possessions ending at the Denver 21, 12, 9 and 12. With 5:23 remaining in the third quarter, the Browns decided to go for it on fourth-and-one from the Denver 5-yard line.

Baker Mayfield was ruled short of the line to gain on fourth-and-one on a questionable spot. Al Riveron, the NFL’s supervisor of officials, upheld the decision of officials on the field.

The Browns’ last chance came with 3:23 remaining in the game.

Cleveland faced a fourth-and-four from the Denver 28. Mayfield tried to force the ball into Jarvis Landry double covered over the middle, and it fell incomplete. He never saw Odell Beckham, who had a step on Chris Harris Jr. down the sideline.

Beckham, who made two highlight reel catches on his five catches for 87 yards, was not happy.

But Allen won the day.

Joe Flacco won only two games for the Broncos. Allen won the first start of his career.

Allen completed 12 of 20 passes for 193 yards and two touchdowns, giving him a 125.6 passer rating. He did not blink all day.

He got help from Phillip Lindsay, who had nine carries for 92 yards and a touchdown, and tight end Noah Fant, who had three catches for 115 yards and a touchdown.

Mayfield went 27-of-42 for 273 yards and a touchdown to Landry, who had six catches for 51 yards.