The Cleveland Browns are suddenly hot, and Odell Beckham Jr. looks like his old self.
In a bonkers game, the Browns mixed in trickery, a strong rushing attack and some mental toughness in building a huge lead over the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on Sunday. In the end, it was Beckham — a long-time Dallas tormentor — who had the last laugh in a 49-38 win over the Cowboys.
Beckham got the game’s scoring torrent started with some razzle dazzle, catching a 37-yard trick pass from Jarvis Landry. Dallas struck back with two TDs to take a 14-7 lead, but Beckham’s second TD grab — this one more traditional, from Baker Mayfield — tied the game up early in the second quarter.
That was the start of a run when Cleveland ripped off 34 straight points. The Browns’ run game paved the way through the middle of the contest, totaling a whopping 307 yards on 40 carries. This despite leading rusher Nick Chubb — who ran for 43 yards in the game — suffering an apparent knee injury late in the first quarter.
Kareem Hunt ran for two scores, and D'Ernest Johnson (who entered the game with 26 career rush yards) ran for 83 on 11 carries.
Cleveland (3-1) has won its third in a row after losing the opener. It was also the first time the Browns topped the 30-point mark for three straight games since 1968. The Cowboys fell to 1-3 for the first time since 2010.
The Cowboys fell behind 41-14 late in the third quarter, before storming back behind QB Dak Prescott, who threw for a career-high 502 yards. His previous high (472) came in last week’s loss to the Seattle Seahawks.
After leading two fast touchdown drives of 77 and 81 yards in the fourth quarter, Prescott once more led the Cowboys down the field in a stirring drive, hitting CeeDee Lamb for his second TD of the game to cut Cleveland’s lead to 41-38.
The Cowboys scored 24 unanswered points, including three straight two-point conversions. But the Browns recovered the onsides kick, and on their first offensive play after that, they called a reverse to Beckham.
Unorthodox call? Sure, But Beckham broke a few tackles and housed the rushing attempt 50 yards for the back-breaking score. Watch the wave Beckham threw in to the Dallas fans for good measure.
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It was his sixth, seventh and eighth career touchdowns against Dallas in eight games against them. The first seven came as a member of the New York Giants.
He looked like the old Beckham on Sunday — and all it took was a game against the team he loves to torment.
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