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Turning Points

4 Turning Points: Browns put Lions on defensive with quick-strike TD drive

1. The Browns made quick work on their opening drive of the game to take a lead they'd never relinquish.

Baker Mayfield and tight end Devon Cajuste got the Browns immediately into Lions' territory when they connected for a 41-yard pass on the first play of the game. Cleveland's rookie quarterback made two big throws on third downs to extend the drive, as he hit Cajuste with a 7-yard pass on third-and-5 and followed with a 7-yarder to Da'Mari Scott on third-and-8. The latter set up a fourth-and-manageable situation for the Browns, who punched it in the end zone with a 3-yard Nick Chubb run.

Mayfield was 3-of-4 for 55 yards on the opening drive. Chubb did the rest with 28 yards on four carries, including a 15-yarder.

2. Gunning for a roster spot, Matthew Dayes made a big impression on the Browns' next two drives, which tacked on 10 more points to Cleveland's lead.

Much like Cleveland's opening drive, Mayfield struck big on the first play, connecting with Dayes on a short pass that opened up a wide swath of turf for the running back to scamper across for 30 yards. The drive ultimately stalled, and the Browns settled for a 39-yard field goal.

Faced with a third-and-6 at the Lions' 42-yard line, the Browns kept it on the ground, and Dayes made the Lions pay. He made one cut near the first-down marker and sprinted past everyone for the 42-yard score.

Dayes, who is active on all of the team's special teams units, finished the night with 111 yards of offense.

The Cleveland Browns play the Detroit Lions at Ford Field.

3. For the first time all game, the Browns defense was on its heels. With Matt Cassel in at quarterback, the Lions got something cooking during a two-minute drill drive at the end of the first half.

The Lions faced a third-and-1 at Cleveland's 30-yard line when Cassell dropped back and looked to connect with Hakeem Valles in the right flat. It never got there, as Browns defensive end Nate Orchard leaped in the air, snagged it with both hands and bolted down the sidelines for a 64-yard touchdown return.

It was a big moment for Cleveland's defense, which forced four turnovers the previous week and pitched its second straight first-half shutout. It could have been an even bigger moment for Orchard, who is battling for a roster spot entering his fourth season with the Browns.

4. The opportunities were sparse throughout the first three games, but Zane Gonzalez was able to pick up some legitimate momentum entering his second season with the Browns.

The lone remaining kicker on Cleveland's roster nailed two field goals, one from 39 yards in the first quarter and the other from 45 in the third. That made Gonzalez, who had yards to spare on a 54-yarder last week against the Eagles, a perfect 3-for-3 on preseason field goals.

Gonzalez's rookie season was rocky at times, but the former Lou Groza Award winner finished strong. He made eight of his final nine attempts, including two long kicks in frigid conditions at Chicago and Pittsburgh.