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Week 5 Game Recap: Baltimore Ravens 9, Cleveland Browns 12


What you need to know

Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens offense struggled to find consistency against a tough Cleveland defense. The Browns appeared to be extremely well prepared for everything the Ravens wanted to do offensively. The Browns essentially took John Brown out of the game with Denzel Ward and safety help over the top. Alex Collins was efficient and effective with his carries but the Browns seemed to catch on to a tendency for the Ravens to run on first down when Collins is in the game. Buck Allen saw significant snaps and volume after a Collins fumble the previous week and Collins briefly left the game with a leg injury. Michael Crabtree continues to drop passes every week and the Ravens need him to produce if John Brown is going to draw so much attention. The Ravens tight ends were not very involved in the passing game.

Cleveland Browns

The Browns went to overtime for the third time in five games, this time emerging victorious on a field goal with :02 seconds left in the game. Greg Joseph made it interesting by barely squeaking the ball over the uprights on his 37-yard game-winner. Joseph had missed a field goal attempt and an extra point earlier in the game. Baker Mayfield reached 300 passing yards for the first time in his career while No. 4 overall pick Denzel Ward was phenomenal, intercepting Joe Flacco at the goal line and adding a blocked field goal.

Baltimore Ravens

QB Joe Flacco, 87 offensive snaps, Pass: 29 - 56 - 298 - 0 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 2 - 13 - 0
Joe Flacco and the Ravens had a very inconsistent performance against the Browns. The Ravens had two costly turnovers, struggled to make contested catches, and were too predictable with their offensive game plan. The Browns' defense paid special attention to John Brown with a safety over the top of him for the majority of the game. Michael Crabtree had a game to forget with two drops and a missed opportunity for a game winning touchdown in the end zone. The heavy usage of Buck Allen is worrisome and detrimental to the offense. Allen offers almost nothing in terms of dynamic play making ability. After finally establishing some sort of offensive rhythm and moving the ball into the red zone, Flacco threw an ugly interception. Flacco tried to throw the ball away in the direction of Nick Boyle but the pass was tipped at the line of scrimmage and intercepted by Denzel Ward. Flacco moved the Ravens into scoring position running the two minute offense before halftime. However, Tucker's field goal attempt was blocked leaving the Ravens with 3 first half points. Flacco made two throws late in the game that could have helped the Ravens pull out the victory. The first hit Crabtree in the hands in the end zone for a go ahead score and the second was a back shoulder throw to Brown where Brown could only get one foot in bounds. The completion would have set up a long field goal attempt for Justin Tucker.

RB Javorius Allen, 50 offensive snaps, Rush: 8 - 34 - 0, Rec: 6 - 44 - 0 (8 targets)
Buck Allen dominated the work in the passing game and around the goal line. Allen looked less than impressive in this game losing a fumble and going to the ground on first contact on the majority of his touches. Allen made a catch on a check down underneath, was wrapped up, and stripped. It was Allen's first fumble of the season compared to the 3 lost fumbles by Alex Collins. Allen gained the edge on his first carry following the fumble and picked up 17 yards. Allen made catches of 7 and 16 yards on the Ravens' final possession in regulation. Allen showed strength and determination refusing to go down on first contact.

RB Alex Collins, 27 offensive snaps, Rush: 12 - 59 - 0, Rec: 1 - 7 - 0 (4 targets)
Alex Collins was able to pick up chunks of yardage on a number of his carries but the Ravens were not able to sustain enough drives to give him the volume needed for a big game. Collins followed nice blocks from Maxx Williams and Nick Boyle around the edge for a 19 yard gain on the Ravens' first offensive play. Collins got a nice block from James Hurst to get to the second level for a 9 yard gain his second carry. Collins made a beautiful jump cut to reverse fields at the second level and pick up 14 yards. Collins left the field with some sort of leg injury leading to more work for Buck Allen. Collins returned to the field and dropped a low throw on a check down from Flacco. Collins had a 17 yard gain negated by an illegal block in the back penalty. Collins is so clearly the better player than Buck Allen that I thought Collins would eventually dominate the workload but the Ravens are determined to give Allen significant work.

WR Michael Crabtree, 72 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 66 - 0 (12 targets)
Michael Crabtree had an opportunity for a huge game with John Brown drawing Denzel Ward and double coverage but did not produce. Crabtree dropped a potential third down conversion running a comeback route on 3rd and 8. Crabtree dropped another target on what would have been a modest gain on second and short. Crabtree picked up 12 yards running an underneath crossing route. Crabtree ran a slant from the slot and was targeted in the end zone but Flacco's throw was off target. Crabtree made a nice catch over the middle running an in breaking route for a 20 yard catch and run. Crabtree made back to back catches against EJ Gaines for gains of 6 and 19. The second was a nice back shoulder throw and catch. Crabtree had what would have been a 14 yard game winning touchdown hit him in the hands and fall incomplete. Crabtree made an 8 yard catch running a comeback.

WR Willie Snead, 67 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 55 - 0 (7 targets)
Willie Snead continues to play well as the number three receiver for the Ravens. Snead is efficient making plays over the middle and clearly has the trust of Joe Flacco. Snead caught a slant between two defenders and made a nice move after the catch for a 17 yard gain. Snead made another catch running a slant and ran through contact after making the catch for 13 yards. Snead was brought down after a gain of 13 on a crossing route and would have had a huge gain had he kept his feet. Snead ran a quick out route from the slot for a gain of 7.

WR John Brown, 59 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 58 - 0 (14 targets)
John Brown saw a lot of defensive attention from the Browns. Brown was shadowed by Denzel Ward for the entire second half who often had safety help over the top. A number of Brown's targets were throwaways down field because the play was well defended by the Browns. Brown saw his first three targets fall incomplete. Brown was well covered by a different member of the Browns' secondary on each play. Brown made his first catch running an in breaking route in front of the deep safeties for a 28 yard catch and run. Brown was targeted as he came wide open over the middle of the field but the pass was batted down at the line of scrimmage. Brown picked up 11 yards running a slant route. Brown made a 15 yard catch running a comeback route with Denzel Ward in coverage. Ward got his hand in between Brown's to disrupt what would have been a 20 yard completion and 3rd down conversion. Brown made an amazing one handed catch on a back shoulder throw along the sideline but was only able to get one foot inbounds.


Cleveland Browns

QB Baker Mayfield, 80 offensive snaps, Pass: 25 - 43 - 342 - 1 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 2 - 23 - 0
Mayfield reached 300 passing yards for the first time in his career as he led his team to an overtime win against a tough Baltimore defense. Mayfield's afternoon got off to a slow start as he threw his lone interception at the end of the first offensive series. Mayfield and Rashard Higgins appeared to have a miscommunication on the pick as Higgins went upfield and Mayfield threw toward the middle of the field. A Baltimore defender made a nice, diving catch for the pick. Mayfield took a deep shot to Antonio Callaway on the second drive but the ball was overthrown. At the beginning of the second quarter, the Browns were backed up all the way to their own end zone but Mayfield made an excellent pass to Seth DeValve for a 26-yard gain to give them some space to operate. Mayfield's lone touchdown came toward the end of the second quarter when he hit a wide-open Rashard Higgins for a 19-yard score in the middle of the end zone. In the third quarter, he targeted Jarvis Landry in the end zone but threw the ball a bit too high for his receiver. Landry wanted a pass interference flag on the play but didn't get one. He saved one of his best passes for the game-winning drive in overtime when he threw a strike while on the move to Derrick Willies for a 39-yard gain. Mayfield took five sacks in the game but he showed elusiveness in the pocket and escaped several other times where it looked like the Ravens had him. He also had two runs which went for a total of 25 yards nullified by penalties in the game. While he isn't known as a running quarterback, he's shown enough to keep defenses honest when plays break down. His 13-yard scramble on the game-winning drive came with his team backed up near their own end zone and kick-started the drive for his offense.

RB Carlos Hyde, 28 offensive snaps, Rush: 17 - 63 - 0, Rec: 2 - 14 - 0 (3 targets)
There were concerns that Carlos Hyde would start to lose carries to rookie Nick Chubb after Week 4, but that was not the case against Baltimore in Week 5. Hyde saw 17 carries to Chubb's three and continues to operate as the team's clear lead back. Hyde caught a short pass and turned it into a nine-yard gain on the first play of the game. He ran hard throughout the contest, breaking tackles and fighting for extra yards. He saw one red zone carry on the second drive of the third quarter but he was stuffed on the play. Hyde isn't catching passes the way he did for San Francisco in 2017 but it is clear that the Browns like to use him when they get into scoring position.

RB Duke Johnson, 41 offensive snaps, Rush: 5 - 35 - 0, Rec: 1 - 7 - 0 (1 targets)
Johnson saw another week of sparse usage. He finished with just six touches in the game with three of his carries coming consecutively on the game-winning drive in overtime. His first touch didn't come until the beginning of the second quarter on a 3rd-and-long play. His only catch came on a dump off in the second quarter. He didn't contribute much in the way of overall stats but Johnson's three carries on the game-winning drive were huge for his team. The Browns were at Baltimore's 43 yard line with overtime winding down and Johnson ripped off gains of 15, five, and four yards to get his team down to the Baltimore 19 for a manageable field goal attempt. Johnson is a much better player in real life than it appears he will be for fantasy this season in Todd Haley's offense.

RB Nick Chubb, 11 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 2 - 0 (1 targets)
The coaching staff spoke of getting Chubb more carries after he ripped off two long touchdown runs in Week 4. That didn't happen as the rookie saw just three carries and was targeted once in the passing game. He did have a fourth carry, which went for 14 yards, nullified by an offensive holding penalty. He had a chance to make a catch with some room to run in front of him, but Baker Mayfield threw the ball a bit too high for him to corral. Chubb remains stuck behind Carlos Hyde in the Cleveland backfield and may need an injury to Hyde to make noise this season.

WR Jarvis Landry, 80 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 69 - 0 (10 targets)
Landry got off to a slow start, catching just one pass for 10 yards in the first half of the game. He was able to absorb a big hit on the play and still hold onto the football. In the second quarter he got a deep shot down the left side of the field but the ball was overthrown by Baker Mayfield. He was closely covered on the play and would have had to make a contested catch had the pass been more accurate. He got going in the second half, catching several short passes and running after the catch to tack on additional yardage. He saw an end zone target in the third quarter but the pass was thrown too high. Landry was upset after the play and was seen campaigning with the officials for a pass interference flag. In the fourth quarter he came out of the backfield to catch a short pass and turn it into a 17-yard gain. He did blunder on the play as he should have gotten out of bounds to stop the clock but instead was brought down trying to fight for extra yards. In overtime he caught a 27-yard pass and was later leveled on a deep pass attempt. The ball was uncatchable but it appeared an argument for an illegal contact penalty could have been made. Landry is coming off two slower games now but he remains the No. 1 option in the Cleveland passing game.

WR Antonio Callaway, 55 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 22 - 0 (5 targets)
Callaway was coming off a rough game in Week 4 and saw his workload decreased in Week 5 against the Ravens. His five targets in the game were his least since Week 2. Callaway has struggled with drops this season and committed another bad one in this game. He had the ball in his hands but lost it when he tried to turn and run with it before securing the catch. He did show nice speed on a short screen which he turned into a nine-yard gain in the fourth quarter.

WR Rashard Higgins, 31 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 66 - 1 (4 targets)
Higgins was having an excellent game but had to leave during the fourth quarter with a knee injury. The team has yet to update his status, so he can be considered questionable for Week 6 at this time. Before the injury, he caught a 19-yard touchdown pass from Baker Mayfield. It was an easy catch as he was wide open in the end zone on the play. He also hauled in a 21-yard pass on 3rd-and-16 during the first quarter.

TE David Njoku, 72 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 69 - 0 (11 targets)
Njoku had his best game of the season and even out-targeted Jarvis Landry by one in the contest. Njoku was mostly used in short and intermediate routes where the Browns got him the ball quickly in hopes he would had room to run after the catch. He ripped off two big gains in the second quarter on consecutive plays, going for 19 yards and then 24. He did struggle with a few drops in the game, which has been an ongoing issue for him. That being said, Njoku has drawn 18 targets in Baker Mayfield's two starts. He hasn't been getting much red zone work but once the offense unlocks that aspect of his game, a mid-season breakout should follow soon thereafter.