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3 Big Takeaways: WR David Bell with first career touchdown against the Jaguars 

Browns dominant defense returns with critical stops and takeaways

Takeaways Week 14

The Browns kicked off the first of two consecutive home games with an impressive win over the Jaguars on Sunday.

Both sides of the ball contributed to Sunday's win.  QB Joe Flacco earned his second start and took command of their offense, while their defense prevailed with four sacks and four total takeaways.

"Just very proud of that football team," HC Kevin Stefanski said. "Knew it was going to be that type of game. That's a playoff team coming in here, AFC opponent. It was hard, we knew that. But really fought to the end and just guys making big plays when we needed them."

So, let's take a look at three takeaways from Sunday's win over the Jaguars.

WR David Bell scored his first career touchdown

As the Browns lined up on a fourth-and-3 in the fourth quarter, Flacco took the snap and looked downfield. WR David Bell was open around the 40-yard line with space in front of him. Flacco threw him the ball, which he caught and turned around to see the open field in front him and took off for the endzone for a 41-yard reception and his first career touchdown.

When Bell turned around after he caught the pass and saw "nothing but green grass," he was surprised. As he ran down the field, Bell's face lit up with a wide smile. While Bell had four targets on Sunday, it was Bell's only reception of the day.

"It just felt like little league back when I was in second grade, just seeing that much green grass, I haven't seen that much since I was about six or seven," Bell said.

Flacco ran down the field to celebrate with Bell in the end zone following the touchdown. Stefanski also ran down the field in celebration following the success of the play call on fourth down and its result of the touchdown.

"That was exciting," Flacco said. "This was one of those plays where they're bringing pressure, and you have to kind of buy a little time. And he did a great job feeling a little soft spot and then making it happen from there."

Browns defense returns with critical stops

The last two weeks while on the road, the Browns defense saw its share of struggles. In that two-week span, the Browns only recorded one sack in Week 12 against the Broncos, and for the first time this season, did not have a sack in Week 13 against the Rams. They also had one takeaway over that two-game stretch.

That changed during Week 14, as they sacked QB Trevor Lawrence four times. Those four sacks came from across their defensive line in DT Maurice Hurst, DE Ogbo Okoronwko and DE Za'Darius Smith, while S Grant Delpit added the fourth sack.

They also found ways to end offensive drives, forcing the Jaguars to punt on seven offensive drives. Jacksonville also turned the ball over on downs late in the fourth quarter as Lawrence threw an incomplete pass intended for WR Zay Jones.

The Browns also had three interceptions, one from CB Greg Newsome II and two from CB Martin Emerson Jr. LB Anthony Walker Jr. forced a fumble and recovered the fumble, setting up the Browns offense in great field position. Their four takeaways tied a season-high for the season – going back to Week 7 against the Colts.

DE Myles Garrett also prevented a 2-point conversion attempt by tackling Lawrence on a throw attempt with less than two minutes left in the game and sealed the win for the Browns.

The Browns recorded 12 total quarterback hits, eight tackles for loss and 10 passes defensed on Sunday. It was the bounce back game the defense needed, and they looked like the dominant defense they had been in at different points of the season – especially at home.

"I thought Coach (Jim Schwartz) called a great game. Coach Schwartz did a great job. Those takeaways were absolutely key," Stefanski said. "He was aggressive. There were a couple of sacks there where we knocked them out of field goal range. So, I thought Coach was outstanding today."

Browns build on success in the passing game

While Bell's 41-yard touchdown was a highlight of its own to cap off a productive offensive day, the Browns passing game once again excelled on Sunday. They finished the game with 307 net passing yards and three passing touchdowns from Flacco.

They found ways to involve multiple pass catchers and spread the ball around. The Browns had eight players with at least one reception. TE David Njoku led the group with 91 receiving yards on six receptions, and two touchdowns. Njoku put the Browns on the board on a 34-yard reception from Flacco that he ran into the end zone for the touchdown.

Njoku's two touchdowns marked his first multi-touchdown game of his career.

"Get him the ball while he's moving down the field," Flacco said of Njoku. "And he's a tough tackle. You can see his speed. I don't know what he ran or anything, but you can see his speed and strength, obviously, when he gets the ball in those types of situations, he's pretty special."

WR Amari Cooper finished the day with 77 yards on seven receptions, while WR Elijah Moore had 42 yards on three catches.

"We have a lot of guys that we trust," Stefanski said. "There are guys that we know when the ball is in their hands, they light up and that's what we're trying to do. We've got some guys like Amari (Cooper) that are going to be getting a ton of attention from the defense. And that's a lot of what happened today. A lot of what happens in these games. As Amari gets more attention, it opens up opportunities for the other guys."

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