1989 AFC Divisional Playoff Game: Buffalo Bills vs. Cleveland Browns | NFL Full Game

1989 AFC Divisional Playoff Game: Buffalo Bills vs. Cleveland Browns | NFL Full Game


>>Now, here and in Buffalo, they do say that this is shirt-sleeve weather. Long sleeve shirt-sleeve weather. I think it’s cold, though. I really think it’s cold.>>Well, Charlie, Buffalo and Cleveland have just come through one of the coldest Decembers on record, and this is not cold compared to what they have dealt with. They can play football very comfortably in this kind of weather. The best news for both of these offense — we don’t have a lot of wind today. We’re going to see full-dimensional football. You can reach into that playbook and grab anything you want today.>>But there is some bad news, and that is the condition of the field.>>Well, it’s bad news and good news. This is the worst turf in the NFL. It’s in surprisingly good shape, but footing is going to be a problem, and it’s going to be more difficult for Buffalo because they’re the team that has to adjust. They’re an artificial turf team. They’ve got all kinds of shoes over there, they’re saying, “Which one? This one? That one?” They’re going to have a few problems, but everybody’s going to have some footing problems during today.>>Championships are won by the defense. What about these two defenses?>>These are the kinds of defenses that win championships. I think they’re even better than their records. When we’re looking at the Buffalo Bills, we’re looking at impact players, two in particular that force you to change the way you play — Bruce Smith and Cornelius Bennett.>>And Cleveland also has impact players.>>They certainly do, Charlie. We’ll have an eye on them, as well, today. Bud Carson’s defense has played very well. These two men, Clay Matthews and Michael Dean Perry both on their way to the Pro Bowl. We’ll watch them carefully.>>Now, when you come to Cleveland though, the Dawg Pound, that’s part of the scene.>>Well, the laughing and shouting, the noise. They’re going to be carefully watched to see that they don’t throw things on the field today. But they’re part of the reason that the Browns love to play at home. [ Cheering ]>>And Buffalo will have the first opportunity on offense, as the Cleveland Browns will be kicking off. Don Beebe and Ronnie Harmon are the deep backs on the return. And we are underway. Taken on the hop by Don Beebe. And he returns near the 35-yard line. Buffalo’s offense. Buffalo’s offensive line working exceptionally well as a unit, giving Jim Kelly the time to throw 25 touchdown passes this season. Backs and receivers. Thurman Thomas and Andre Reed are headed for the Pro Bowl. When Buffalo goes to the shotgun, the fullback and tight end will come out. Ronnie Harmon comes into the backfield and Don Beebe becomes the third wide receiver. Far side, incomplete to Thurman Thomas. Cleveland’s defense. Their defensive front seven has really been the strength of the club this year. They should be even better today with the return of David Grayson, an outside linebacker. When they go to the nickel package, Mike Johnson and David Grayson will come out. Mark Harper and Tony Blaylock join a secondary that tied for second in the NFL with 27 interceptions. Second and 10. And Kelly hands off to Larry Kinnebrew. And Kinnebrew with slow footing. Will become a bigger factor, Merlin, as the game progresses.>>He loves the very nastiest of fields. He’s a power back. He’s basically a flat-footed, straight-ahead kind of runner. His first touchdown ever, as a rookie, scored right here in Cleveland Stadium. I asked him before the game, and he said, “Boy, do I remember.” He said it was right down there by home plate, and it was for 6 yards. He has good numbers on this field. He doesn’t mind the sloppy footing.>>Third down and 4. Kelly a little timing pass. Coming out of the backfield is Thurman Thomas, and he picks up the first down, but there’s a marker on the play. Clay Matthews with the tackle. It’ll be a motion call against the Bills.>>Kelly extremely upset, over to talk to one of the officials, and Marv Levy shaking his head. What appeared to be a first down, a fine pickup by Thurman Thomas…>>Illegal motion, number 87, offense. 5 yards, still third down.>>…will be negated by a call against Butch Rolle.>>And there is Butch Rolle, the third tight end. Metzelaars, McKeller, and Rolle are the three tight ends. And it’s third down and 9. Opening drive. Kelly to throw. All the time in the world. A one-hand pulldown is not there. Thurman Thomas had his right hand on it, couldn’t pull it in. It’ll be fourth down. Robert Banks was there for the Browns. And that means that John Kidd will be kicking.>>A defensive end covering on this play. The Bills had isolated in such a fashion that they were able to get a matchup that’s most unusual — a running back and a great receiver against a defensive end, but he couldn’t hang on to the football.>>Kidd to kick, “The Cube” to return — Gerald McNeil. Not that good a kick. He’ll play it on the bounce. Now step away from it. And it takes a bit of a Buffalo roll. And will go to the 20-yard line. 46 yards on the kick. Cleveland’s offense. Their offensive line has really developed over the season. Now playing their best football. Backs and receivers. Bernie Kosar, he has re-injured that right elbow, but the return of Kevin Mack takes some pressure off of the passing game. When the Browns throw the ball, Mack will stay in. The running back and tight end will come out. Lawyer Tillman and Brian Brennan will come in as wide receivers. Cleveland a first down from their own 20. Barry Redden and Kevin Mack are the two running backs. And it is Redden. And he’s got a couple of yards. Bruce Smith with the tackle. Buffalo’s defense. Their defensive front seven. Linebacker Darryl Talley, he is the unheralded star, and he has been in on 94% of all their defensive plays. On passing downs, Talley will stay in, the two inside linebackers will come out, and Mickey Sutton and John Hagy join a secondary that is missing Leonard Smith. However, the Bills are 5-0 when Dwight Drane starts at strong safety.>>But that new face in the lineup will get a quick look from Bernie Kosar. You better bet on that, Charlie.>>Second down, Metcalf. Flags are down. Metcalf is in. It is incomplete. Slaughter the intended receiver. And Metcalf was in as a wide receiver.>>We got a jump by Bruce Smith that would appear to be an offsides against the defense. Number 78 on the right side of the defensive line, and it looked like he was trapped by the hard count.>>Offsides, number 78, defense. 5 yards, still second down.>>Did he get catched by Kosar’s hard count?>>He got caught by the hard count. Charlie, so far, we have seen receivers dropping that ball. That ball must be very slick. Any time it’s cold, that ball is slicker than it would be on a warm day, but I think maybe nerves playing a little bit of a price here in the early going.>>Second down and three. Again, a very conservative call. Kevin Mack. Across the 30. He’ll have the first down.>>Running inside at the bubble. They have gone several times at Scott Radecic, in for Ray Bentley. They pay a lot of attention to Bruce Smith here. He’s got the double team there. They seal off Shane Conlan on the inside, but that’s just great power running by Kevin Mack.>>Eric Metcalf and Kevin Mack now the two running backs. First down.>>Keep an eye on Mack. He’s got — Or on Eric Metcalf with that toe.>>And the completion over the middle to the tight end, Ozzie Newsome.>>”The Wizard of Oz.”>>Told us earlier this year, when we asked him, was there a possibility if he might play again next year — everybody knew that he announced his retirement. He said, “I’m not going to play in the ’90s unless it’s a playoff game. And when we saw him yesterday, he had the big smile. He said, “I told you it’ll be a playoff game.”>>Well, he is here for the playoffs. Coming right at you. You’ll see him from the left side of your screen, number 82. Dwight Drane. I said they’d go looking for him. There’s a look right there.>>Kevin Mack the remaining back. Langhorne the motion man. And it is Mack. A good outside-inside move, and he has the first down at the 43. Shane Conlan with the tackle.>>The return of Kevin Mack provides a dimension missing for so long during this season for the Browns — the ability to run inside between the tackles. They have a big bull offensive line and had had to rely on the outside speed of Metcalf and the other backs. With Mack back in the lineup, you’ve got that bulling back that can go up inside and pick up those tough yards.>>Metcalf the tailback. And he has that broken or sprained little left toe. And he pops off the right side for about 3.>>Important for the Browns to establish very quickly that Metcalf is going to be able to run. Defensively, you’ve got to show your respect for his quickness and his speed. Although, strangely enough, Charlie, he is more effective on artificial turf.>>Much more.>>This is not his kind of turf. But you have to respect what he can do. He’ll catch the short pass, and suddenly, he’s gone.>>A conservative opening for Cleveland. Their first five plays — four runs, one pass. Second and 7. Kosar, protection. Plenty of time. Completes the pass. Ozzie Newsome leaning for the first down and taking Matt Monger with him. Along with Scott Radecic. And he’s got the first down.>>Either his shoulder pads are hurting, or he’s got some ribs. I think it’s pads. There he is, number 82. You can see he just slips in there, finds a little opening up in front, in between those linebackers. Kosar very quick. No quarterback in football reads the openings in a defense better than Bernie Kosar.>>All-time leading NFL tight end receiver. The Wizard of Oz. First down at the Buffalo 46. Back to the ground game. Kevin Mack. And he does take a pile with him. He will move everybody.>>Early this season, Marc Trestman, the offensive coordinator, was really rattled around. In fact, rumored to be fired perhaps before the end of the season. The late-season comeback has helped his position here, but he’s always been questioned about his play calling. You’ve got to give him some credit for their comeback late in the year, Charlie, and if they go to the Super Bowl, he may even save his job here in Cleveland.>>Five runs, two passes. Still a very conservative opening. Are you surprised?>>Not surprised, Charlie.>>Is this playoff football?>>These are traditional coaches, both of them relatively conservative. I think what they are worried about is making the big mistake early. And of course, if you can move the ball on the ground and control the clock, that’s something you want to do.>>No score in the ball game. Cleveland’s first offensive opportunity. A controlled pass near the first down. Ron Middleton with the reception, Scott Radecic with the tackle. Ron Middleton, number 87, the tight end. And what a story. His wife, Kim, with a premature baby, 12 week premature. 1 pound, 12 ounces. And everybody is doing fine, including the baby and the mother and the father.>>It’s been such a tough season, a strange season for him. Ron Middleton — he was cut by the Redskins, signed by Tampa Bay. He was inactive for the first week, he was cut again. At this time, the mother and the baby are both in the hospital. He didn’t know how they were going to be able to do. He didn’t have a job, didn’t have any work, didn’t have money coming in. Signed by the Browns, then cut by the Browns. He said the low point in his career, Charlie, he was cut and off the roster on Thanksgiving Day in a motel here in Cleveland, watching his team play on Thanksgiving Day. He didn’t know whether he was going to be back on the squad. He said that was the lowest point. He’s now back on the team, has been productive. Has had a touchdown. He’s a very happy young man.>>And there’s the play selection — 5 runs, 3 passes. Kosar’s 3 passes — 3 of 3 for 19 yards, all to tight ends. That up stance of Kosar — he’s a little slow getting away from center. Kevin Mack. Bills’ defense is lying in wait of Kevin Mack, but he needed, as you knew, just a few inches for that first down, and he’s got it. Shane Conlan, Art Still with the tackle.>>Conservative, yes, but so far, successfully conservative. You can look for Kosar. He’ll tap you up close. He’ll draw you in as he attacks those short zones, and then, suddenly, Webster Slaughter flashing deep. Kosar will go at his direction.>>7:10 time remaining in a scoreless first quarter. The Bills have had one offensive opportunity. First offensive drive of the Cleveland Browns.>>Ooh, good play.>>Good defensive play, Art Still. And he is joined by Dwight Drane. So now, now Cleveland will have to change their offensive philosophy.>>Well, they certainly have got long yardage here. Still with a fine play. Watch how quickly he is inside. Right there, the collision in the backfield. Mack is just swamped. Bruce Smith also there, as they stunted both of those defensive ends inside.>>Second down and 12. Slaughter goes wide to the far side. And Kosar’s in the shotgun. When he’s ready, he’ll lift a knee. Oh, they’re doing it with a count this time, a silent count.>>Oh!>>Knocked down.>>The long arms of Art Still. When you’re 6’7″, and that ball is being thrown sidearm, you’ve got a chance to reach up and swat it. That’s exactly what number 72 did on that play.>>The Bills told us they wanted to take away the “B” gaps, the gaps between the players, to knock the pass down.>>You’ll see it here. You see how low that delivery is from Kosar. That ball was thrown right at shoulder level.>>And Smerlas — “Hands off!”>>Well, he’s doing what he’s got to do, a little bit of good playacting there, but he’s not trying to bang Bernie down. He’s just trying to do his job inside. Kosar will take a time-out. There was some confusion on the count.>>And a celebration by the Bills’ defense. This is the opening quarter, and we have no score. Cleveland Stadium — look at the configuration. Originally built in 1930 as a possible Olympic stadium. They wanted to get the Olympics in ’32. It went to Los Angeles, as you know. But look at that, it looks exactly like an Olympic stadium.>>Modified for both baseball and football later on and has seen some very historic games.>>And this is the current drive — 11 plays, 43 yards. The Browns have used 7:19 on the clock. We have no score. 4 wide receivers. Third and 12.>>The biggest play of this drive coming, as Kosar faces his first third and long. Langhorne in motion. And Langhorne the receiver. And he is dropped by Darryl Talley short of the first down.>>He is in range for the field goal, however.>>And here comes Matt Bahr.>>One of the things that Matt Bahr talked about on the field was the fact that, when you are kicking in the sandy area of this field, you never know what kind of footing you’re going to get. You see them trying to smooth out that sandy area there. It takes a little of the range away from these field goal kickers.>>Pagel to hold. They do have a fake off of this. They’ve used it this year. Will it carry?>>There’s the slip.>>No good.>>Charlie, we talked about the footing and the plant foot, and Bahr plants — Watch Bahr’s plant foot. As he starts through, his plant foot will go right out from underneath him. Right there. You see the plant foot slide? The turf got one.>>And we have no score. Scoreless first quarter. Both teams have now had a chance to do a little bit of hitting and to settle in. Here’s Jim Kelly. And the pass is comp– No, it’s incomplete. James Lofton the intended receiver. Hanford Dixon had the coverage. We’ll take another look.>>Lofton had that ball in his hands. Some real nervousness on the part of these Buffalo Bill receivers. They’ve dropped about three or four passes for Kelly so far.>>Kelly is 0 for 3.>>And I think all of those have been catchable passes.>>Yes, they have. And this one is complete. Andre Reed — he breaks it! Touchdown, Buffalo! No flags. 72 yards.>>At the opening of our show, we talked about big-play receivers and big weapons. The first name mentioned in Kelly’s arsenal — Andre Reed.>>He split the safeties, and they couldn’t catch him. Cleveland — 13 plays, eight minutes, no points. Buffalo — 2 plays, 72 yards, and they lead. [ Whistle blows ] It hits the upright and drops through.>>Andre Reed coming out of the slot, right side of your screen. Felix Wright laying back on this play, not able to recover his footing, and Reed streaks by him, and no one will catch him.>>It was the upright holding the screen that it hit. 7-0. And the Buffalo Bills strike first. Scott Norwood will kicking off. The deep back of the return team is Eric Metcalf. Again, bothered by the strained little toe that he hurt in the Houston game a couple of weeks ago. And he has got a special built-in part of his shoe to give him some protection and some relief. But he is playing up. They figure that Norwood is not going to kick it that deep.>>Yep, he’s not going to kick it, so he puts it back on the tee.>>He’ll wait another time. Keith Jones and Mike Oliphant are the wingmen. With Jones on the far side, Oliphant on the near side. The Buffalo Bills — almost 16 yards allowed per kickoff. Led the NFL for third straight season in this category. Metcalf. Makes his cut at the 15. [ Whistle blows ] And he’ll return to about the 33.>>Going back to that touchdown, we’ll have a chance to show you Andre Reed just running a little slant-in pattern. Here’s Felix Wright. He’s going to drift back and lose his footing here. Thane Gash late coming across to protect deep, and that opens the way for the long run after the catch. Right there, just a simple in pattern, and there’s Gash, who had drifted deep, but just unable to get his footing quickly enough to get in there and get a shot at Reed.>>And as you could see, the magic orange shoes of Hanford Dixon did not perform their magic. He could not catch him. First down for Cleveland on their own 33-yard line. Bills lead it 7-0. Complete — Webster Slaughter. First down, Bills’ 49. 18 yards. Shane Conlan with the tackle, along with Mark Kelso.>>Well, you’ve seen the big-play receiver, Andre Reed. Here comes Cleveland’s answer, Webster Slaughter. And the same kind of pattern exactly, but Buffalo was able to shut it down before Slaughter could get away.>>And what we talked about — full-dimensional offenses.>>We are seeing them here.>>4:12 time remaining first quarter. Buffalo 7, Cleveland 0. Second opportunity at offense for the Browns. Metcalf in motion. Kosar comes back over the middle, and it is complete to Ozzie Newsome. First down.>>When you talk to Walt Corey, the defensive coordinator for these Buffalo Bills, he said, this Browns offense reminds him a lot of San Francisco’s offense. They’ll pick at you, they’ll throw those short patterns, they’ll control you with that short passing game, like this quick throw to Ozzie Newsome. And no one does a better job of that — aside from Joe Montana — than Bernie Kosar.>>Ozzie Newsome has not fumbled in the last 535 times that he has touched the ball. You got to go back 10 years ago. Kosar 6 of 7, 58 yards. Barry Redden. He’s got 1, maybe 2. Let’s call it the 36. Scott Radecic with the tackle. It’s second down and 9. At what stage — You’ve been in playoff games, championship games. What stage of the ball game do the players finally settle in?>>Well, it certainly has happened by now. Usually, I think it’s quicker than we’ve seen it today. There’s a lot of nervousness early in this ball game, but that’s understandable. Certainly for this man. It’s his first opportunity in the playoffs as a head coach.>>Kosar — he is dropped.>>Bruce Smith at the bottom of that stack. We talked about impact players, and there is one right there.>>And Scott Radecic was right with him.>>From the bottom of your screen, number 78, and he fills the bottom of your screen. He’s right in Kosar’s eyes there. Right underneath the block of Farren. Radecic there to help him. But that is just a power sack by Bruce Smith.>>Led the Bills with 13 sacks. Third down and 16.>>You love this, defensively. Lean out an attack that quarterback.>>He brings in some added outside protection, scrambles a bit, throws downfield. Short of the first down.>>But not very much short. Brennan pulls it down about a yard shy of the first down.>>Brian Brennan operating on a bad knee, and shaking his head because he knows it’s his responsibility to get enough for the first down. There he is, outside, number 86. And again, the footing played a role there.>>Yeah.>>You saw the defensive man, Sutton, fall down as he tried to stop.>>And we’ve got a time-out. The Browns with the ball, the Bills with the lead.>>Cleveland! Cleveland! Cleveland!>>Number 20, Mickey Sutton, does not know where the cut will come, and when he tries to react, you see his feet slip out from underneath him, making this catch possible. The decision by Cleveland not to go for the field goal may be related to that slip by Bahr we saw earlier. Treacherous footing having a big impact in this game.>>Fourth down, about a yard and a half. There’s a gap right over the center. On an option to Metcalf.>>Can you believe that?>>And he does it.>>All in the spotting. They were running that option play in practice yesterday, and I’m saying, “You got to be kidding me. You’re going to have Bernie Kosar running the option?” And a couple of the coaches down there said, “We hope not.” Well, you just saw it. Bud Carson very simply says, “Let’s pull out the stops.” Marc Trestman says, “Give it to the quickest man on the field.” And there he is. And he gets the first down. [ Crowd cheering ]>>He’s got it. The crowd tells the story. Mark Kelso was there for the Bills. Bills lead it 7-0. 1:35 time remaining, first quarter.>>You have to feel good for this man. He waited so very long. Well, Marv Levy’s not feeling good for Bud Carson. He is upset about that spot. But Bud Carson waited so long for his opportunity to be a head coach. He came in to a city with huge expectations. Just being in the playoffs — not good enough. He’s expected to take this team to the Super Bowl. And they looked like anything but a Super Bowl team through a good part of this season.>>But they have looked exceptionally good the last couple of games of the season. Little swing pass outside. Metcalf a good outside-inside fake, looks for a little air, and he goes out of bounds. Very reminiscent of the Monday night move that he made against the Bengals.>>And he makes this move against one of the quickest linebackers in football, Cornelius Bennett. Cornelius Bennett rarely faked out of position. Great balance. But he is faked out here by a great one-on-one move. Look at that — inside, outside, and back down the street. Finally forced out of bounds.>>And the reverse angle.>>I don’t think that toe is bothering him too much right at this moment. Great, great quickness and good footing. The lighter man, I think, with an advantage here. His feet not sliding as some have slid.>>Second down and 10. Now we go back to the big man, Kevin Mack. First down. Flag is down. Only the second flag that we’ve had in the ball game.>>A very upset wide receiver for the Browns, and they may be calling a clip on someone there from the outside. Webster Slaughter is the man who is extremely upset.>>And notice how Bernie was down in and pulling everybody out, a little smile. “Let’s get back, come on, we’ve got work to do.” Meanwhile, the Buffalo Bills leading 7-0. Their offense is sitting on the bench. And although it’s not that cold, you still have a tendency to get just a little bit stiff.>>Holding, number 84, offense. 10 yards, still second down.>>And that’s why he was so upset.>>Well, he knew that they had thrown the flag on him, and he’s saying, “No way. I didn’t do it.” But they will ticket him with a 10-yard penalty, and that’s going to make it very difficult now, as Kosar will be faced with second and about 12. Let’s see if we can see it. From the slot, number 84, Webster Slaughter, second man in. Working right there. Just…>>Hmm, I’m not so sure that…>>He just reached up and hooked the shoulder, Charlie.>>Of Kirby Jackson.>>Yes, just reached up and hooked the shoulder on Kirby Jackson.>>Almost looked like Kirby was trying to hook him, also. Second down and 12. Pressure from the back side. [ Whistle blows ] And high and wide. It’ll be third down and 12. He was looking for somebody who wasn’t there.>>It was sight adjustment, and Eric Metcalf, right-hand side of your screen, you’ll see him coming down. Well, he’s not going inside there. That was the first option. He turns around and looks back over his shoulder. Metcalf shaking his head. I thought you were going to the outside, he’s saying. Kosar was going and expecting Metcalf to go upfield down the sideline.>>Sight adjustment — they both sight the defense, have to read the same thing, make the same adjustment at the same time.>>And they didn’t there.>>Third and 12. Langhorne — incomplete. Fourth down. And the second field goal attempt by Cleveland. Matt Bahr missing earlier from 45 yards out. Slippery footage.>>Let’s look at what he’s doing there again. He’s trying to find a spot on that field.>>And it’s about the same spot.>>You see him kicking at that turf a little bit. Checking it. He said, “When you kick on this kind of turf, you have to plant very flat-footed.>>45 yards out. He can score the ball. And he has it! [ Crowd cheering ]>>A little bit of relief for Art Modell, who –>>He’s still talking about the miss.>>And better footing on this kick. The last time Bahr tried this, his foot went right out from underneath him. This time, he’s able to stay upright and deliver just enough to creep that ball over the bar.>>And with 48 seconds left to go in the first quarter, it is Buffalo 7 and Cleveland 3. The return men for the Buffalo Bills — number 82, Don Beebe, and number 33, Ronnie Harmon. And it is Harmon at the 10. He looks better. [ Whistle blows ] And he returns just across the 25-yard line.>>Similar approach by both defenses so far, Charlie. They’re trying to keep everything in front of them. Of course, on special teams, you’re looking for big hits. You like to shake that ball loose. Ronnie Harmon has had a little fumbling trouble earlier in the year. Whoo, big hit, Eddie Johnson. They call him the assassin. He goes down very quickly to make a big stop on Harmon. But the ball stayed firmly in Harmon’s hands, and Jim Kelly back out on the field.>>And the last time that he was on the field, he took the Bills 72 yards in two plays. Andre Reed with the touchdown. [ Crowd cheering ] [ Whistle blows ] Kinnebrew is stopped by Felix Wright.>>Charlie, that big play by Andre Reed really the only difference so far in this game. Both defenses doing a good job of keeping everything in front of them, except for that one play. Thomas tried to block right there on Wright. Wright gets his shoulder underneath, and Kinnebrew was turned to the sideline. And that’s the way you want to deal with the big back. You get his body turned to the sideline, then he can’t use his power on you. Kelly to the sideline to talk to the coaches. We’re going to have the quarter exchange.>>We take the countdown to the end of the first quarter. And it’s Buffalo 7, Cleveland 3. The magic orange shoes, click your heels three times.>>You’re in Kansas, I’m sure. No, no, you’re in Cleveland. I got to tell you, though, Paul Tagliabue, the commissioner, is here, and he’s looking at those shoes, and he’s saying, “I don’t think they’re up to code, obviously.”>>They deviate.>>They deviate substantially. Well, these Browns said, “We don’t care. We think it helps us.” I don’t know how orange shoes help you, but they think they do, and there are a bunch of them with either all or part of those shoes painted orange here today.>>You play like you dress. [ Laughs ] Second and 15. Kelly a little screen pass, left flat — dropped! By Larry Kinnebrew. Now, Kinnebrew has only five receptions in the entire season. Statistically, the first quarter.>>Jim Kelly’s got to be saying, “Wait a minute, I can’t catch these passes. I can only throw them.” First downs. Brown’s obviously controlling that department, but look at the time. Look at the time of ball control. But, Charlie, you know what? Statistics be…>>There’s only one that counts.>>There is one on the board, and it belongs to the Buffalo Bills.>>They lead 7-3. Into coverage. It is caught.>>Don Beebe is there. No, not Beebe — Andre Reed. I thought it was 82. And Reed a little bit slow getting up. Number 83.>>And he’s a couple of yards shy of the first down.>>There’s Beebe going deep to clear out. Reed coming down, takes a good hard hit right there from Minnifield. Minnifield locked up one-on-one on Reed all day. They’re trying to control him with Andre Reed.>>And the Bills had three receivers in the same area. John Kidd to kick. McNeil the return man. Ooh, good kick.>>Beautiful kick.>>And he takes it and is dropped immediately.>>No fair catch. Ohh, a big risk on that one.>>Steve Tasker was down along with Chris Hale. 45 yards.>>The Cube. Boy, I can’t believe that. Blaylock bumps into his own man. The danger of a fumble evident.>>Paul Tagliabue, the NFL Commissioner, is here, along with his wife, Chan. And his autograph, now that we’re in the playoffs, is now on the football. And his name is “Wilson.” [ Chuckling ] No, it’s on the other side.>>If you’re a receiver, and you’re looking that ball in, you’re reading that name.>>Yes. Cleveland, from their own 21-yard line, first down. Buffalo 7, Cleveland 3. Metcalf in motion. Kosar’s pass is complete for the first down. Reggie Langhorne. 16 yards. A very conservative start for the Browns, and now they fill the air with football.>>The thing that the Browns have been able to demonstrate is that they can find holes in that Buffalo secondary, and they can give Kosar time to throw the football. Langhorne able to pick up a little extra on the first down on that play, but so far, no payoff. No points on the board for the Browns. They certainly have moved the ball well. They need points.>>No touchdowns. 3 points on the field goal. Kelso making the tackle. First down at the 37. Metcalf. And he is brought down right at the line of scrimmage. May have a yard. Darryl Talley making the tackle. It’ll be second and 9.>>I talked to Eric Metcalf about his foot, Charlie, and he didn’t really work a great deal during the week at all. Jogged a little bit. He said, “I’m not going to know until I get out there, and I’m not going to test it until I have to.” So far, in this ball game, we have seen him put a lot of pressure on that foot, and it has responded well. That’s good news for the Browns and for Metcalf. Bad news for Buffalo.>>And the running back in with him is now Tim Manoa. And Metcalf the motion man. Kosar scrambles out and may get back to the line of scrimmage. That’s about it. Scott Radecic was there for Buffalo.>>Bernie not noted for his scrambling ability. Never has been afraid to take that ball upfield. And is smart about it. He doesn’t want to lose the yardage, so he’ll get back as far as he can if there’s nothing open.>>We talked to him yesterday, asked him about the last drive against Houston. I said, “It looked to me as if you’re really having a good time.” He said, “That’s what it’s all about. You want to get to the end of the season, you’ve got two minutes to win the game, and that will take you into the playoffs.” He said, “I was having the time of my life.”>>Quarterbacks love it when they have control. Certainly, a quarterback like Bernie likes to feel right now, and seems to have a good — Well, they’ve got the control there.>>Free play.>>Darryl Talley.>>Buffalo jumping. The pass is incomplete.>>Charlie, he’s had a good day on the hard count, and he’s got an eager Buffalo defense out there. He gets them again with the hard count. [ Crowd cheering ]>>Is it easier — as we listen to Dick Jorgensen, the referee…>>Offsides, number 56, defense. 5 yards, still third down.>>The hard count, for those that don’t watch football all season long, is that Kosar goes, “Hut, hut,hut,”and nobody moves, and then the defense comes with that voice inflection. Sometimes they’ll jerk their shoulders just a little. Easier to do this in a playoff game where everybody’s a little more beat up?>>One of the keys are that emotions are running very high. But Talley was trying to time it so that there was no one that could step in and get him. Had he been right about the count, he would have had a sack.>>Third down and 3. Streak to the right side. A reverse — Tillman. First down. The Browns opening the door to all of the offense.>>An end around, the kind of play you would expect from a college team, effectively put into play here by the Cleveland Browns. Lawyer Tillman, who is a big, strong rookie. Excellent speed.>>6’5″, 230.>>Here he comes, across the play right there, and Kosar just hands him the football. Good blocking up in front. Tony Jones, number 66, running out in front of him. Interesting play.>>Cleveland now 12 passes, 12 runs. Kosar 9 of 12 for 97 yards. It’s been all Cleveland except the scoreboard. The Bills lead it 7-0 on a 72-yard Kelly-to-Reed touchdown pass. 72 yards in 2 drives. That’s been the Bills’ offense.>>Kosar will be looking for the Bills to cheat up now. Got to expect him to try and get deep before long here in this second quarter.>>He was trying to throw a timing pattern to Ozzie Newsome. Ozzie looks back and said, “You got to be kidding. I was occupied, I couldn’t get there.” Put his hands on his hip. But he wanted a timing pattern right at the sideline. It wasn’t there, and so the ball goes out of bounds, and it’s incomplete. Meanwhile, Cornelius Bennett went over and was exchanging a very pleasant greeting with Langhorne, and they reached out, and they shook hands with each other. And play continues. I was surprised. In the midst of a playoff game. Second down. Metcalf dropped for a loss. Bruce Smith going to the Pro Bowl, and you know why as you watch him today.>>No one gets off the ball quicker than number 78, Bruce Smith. Watch him — quick outside move. He’s by Farren before Farren can even get out of his stance. And look at the reaction inside. Metcalf, who is extremely quick, trying to dart up through there, and Bruce Smith just swings over, has such great body control.>>And he’s the one yesterday that gave us the line “shirt-sleeve weather.” He said, “That’s what it is.”>>He grumbled about this field, though. Didn’t bother him on that get-off.>>Tillman in motion. Stays in to block. Kosar going deep. Has a man open! It’s caught! It’s Webster Slaughter! [ Crowd cheering ] [ Whistle blows ] 10-7.>>Webster Slaughter will use the double move as he heads downfield. A little bit of a stutter, and then, right here, he’ll just turn on the gas. Nate Odomes bit, and it is all it takes to get Slaughter into the end zone. 52 yards on the touchdown.>>Here it is. Nate Odomes in that sit-down stance. He’s locked one-on-one. And they’ve been running the short patterns. It looks like another one. You saw the little stutter step. This was not a short pattern.>>52 yards. Now, Webster Slaughter’s 6 touchdown receptions averaged — during the season — 56 yards. And the celebration. And Beebe from the 2. To the 15, the 20, the 30. Good return to the 34-yard line. He’ll have 32 yards on the return. And the celebration, let’s look at it one more time. You may have seen the film of this — wow — in “Sports Illustrated.” And Bernie Kosar.>>He’ll listen. He knew he had a man open, and all he wants to hear is that roar of the crowd. He got it, he got it.>>Buffalo at their own 34-yard line. First down. Trailing now by 3, 10-7. 10:15 time remaining first half. Kelly goes deep, and a great reception. James Lofton, at age 33, pulls it down for 21 yards. Here come the Bills.>>It looked like Lofton caught the back of that football. The ball is thrown high, and let’s see if he doesn’t catch the back of the football. Lofton, who can still run a 4.1 40, a quick glance inside on Hanford Dixon. He did. Midway, midway.>>Very nice play.>>Not the front half anyway, for sure.>>Oh, Lofton has not had many receptions, but he has been key in the last few ball games for Buffalo.>>Told us he wants to play two more years. Thurman Thomas. To the 42. Has 4. It’ll be second down and and 6. Michael Dean Perry with the tack, and that is Thurman Thomas’ first rush of the day.>>One of the hard things, I think, Charlie, for Jim Kelly today was going to be patient. To be patient in there. He’s had some real frustration so far with the passing game, dropped passes. He needs to maintain his cool, maintain his patience, and make good decisions.>>Second down. Thomas to the outside. And it is taken outside at around the 38-yard line by Felix Wright. Third down and short and an opportunity to see all of the skill people at work. Remember, it’s January. We’re in Cleveland. It is overcast, possibility of snow flurries. There is some wind, but not that much on the field, and the temperature is in the mid-30s.>>This is full-dimensional football, Charlie, and it’s a pleasure for us to be able to see that. So often this time of the year, on the mud and the crud of this kind of field, you really can’t do anything but try and play the ball and play sound defense and play field position. Not so today. We’ve seen big plays. Bootleg.>>A nice head fake by Jim Kelly. His teammates say he has the mentality of a linebacker, so you expect him to call this.>>Well, he told me he loved playing linebacker more in high school than quarterback, but he knew the money was at quarterback. He does a good job of getting around Hanford Dixon. Watch this. Hanford, number 29, right there, and Kelly doing his own little dipsy doodle for an extra 5 yards. Good play, Jim Kelly.>>Goes to the 33 and has the first down. Buffalo 7, Cleveland 10. Browns by 3. We move on the 8-minute mark time remaining first half. Kelly to throw. Pump fake, rolls out. Has lots of time. Goes deep. Has a man open at the 5. It’s Lofton walking in. Flag is down back at the 21. It’s 33 if it stands up. James Lofton broke open, but Kelly made it all happen. It’ll be against the Browns. They’ll refuse it, and Buffalo regains the lead.>>Holding, number 31, defense. Declined. Touchdown.>>Frank Minnifield is isolated man-to-man on Andre Reed, the best of those wide receivers in the slot. You see him right there. When a quarterback has as much time as you gave Jim Kelly on that play — and the offensive line did a beautiful job — you can’t expect anything but this to happen. Lofton able to adjust his pattern. And Reed, in adjusting his pattern, Minnifield just reached out and grabbed him. He knew he was gone unless he did it.>>And Jim Kelly with that pump fake, the pocket was collapsing. He stepped outside, gave himself the extra time, and here is Scott Norwood with the extra point. And it is good. And it is now Buffalo 14, Cleveland 10. 7:48 left to go first half. 7:48 time remaining in the second quarter. Buffalo 14, Cleveland 10. Scott Norwood will kick off for Buffalo. The deep back on the return is Eric Metcalf with Keith Jones and Mike Oliphant the wingmen up short.>>Very short kick, but extremely high.>>And taken on the 20-yard line by Oliphant. And he returns to the 34. Merlin?>>Ballard, Devlin, Hull, Ritcher, and Wolford. Let’s turn them loose and watch the protection here as they give this Jim Kelly a chance to step outside. Turn it loose and let it just start back. Now, watch what happens. They’re maintaining position. And right there, everybody. Stop it right there. They just jammed everybody together. They jam all of those defensive men together. Kelly gets the pump fake, steps back, and with time to throw, all kinds of time to throw, an open James Lofton can step into the end zone.>>Browns, their last three possessions. Their three possessions. Now from their own 34-yard line, trailing by 4, 14-10. Langhorne the motion man, Kosar rolls out. Goes deep and overthrows his intended receiver, who is Reggie Langhorne. Second down back at the 34. Mark Kelso with the coverage.>>One of the trademarks of Bernie Kosar’s career as a Cleveland Brown — accurate throws. That was not an accurate throw. Got away from him. Ball tends to sail occasionally. A sidearm thrower, and it’s amazing that Kosar can throw the ball as accurately as he does with that sidearm delivery. A lot of sidearmers have that ball take off on them, and it goes deep. That’s what happened on that play to Kosar.>>What did he tell you about his elbow?>>He said he still can’t straighten it out, Charlie, and it’s still hurting, but he’s throwing the ball very well here today.>>Langhorne. 36-yard line. Well, mark it 37. So it’ll be third down and 7.>>The Browns, Charlie, back to the same pattern — pick, pick, pick. They’ll take every opportunity up in front of you. They’ll take those short shots, and then, the minute that they think they’ve got you playing those short patterns, they’ll do what they did to Slaughter moments ago and go deep. Marc Trestman, he’s watching to pick the spots for the deep shot.>>Kosar has completed 11 of 16 for 152 yard and a touchdown. Kelly has completed 4 of 8, 137 yards, 2 touchdowns. Third down from the shotgun. Has pressure. Throws low, it’s incomplete. He was going to Kevin Mack.>>Kevin Mack is hurt, Charlie. Mack is still on the ground, and he was pushed over in a very difficult position. Was on the ground trying to reach for that pass, and as the defensive man hit him, bent his body down over his legs. Watch the bottom of your screen. Kevin Mack reaching for this football, and you’ll see him, as the play finishes, pushed forward. See how his legs are underneath him?>>Oh, yes.>>The defensive man driving over the top of him, and, boy, there’s no way — there’s nowhere for those legs to go. Nowhere for the legs to go.>>You see him right there reaching for that leg and possibly for the groin.>>A thigh or a groin pull.>>He is hurting.>>Clock is stopped with 6:45 time remaining in the half.>>If Kevin Mack is injured, Charlie, you lose a part of the dimension that they were so excited to have back — the ability to hammer inside those tackles.>>Also, Kosar a little bit slow coming back.>>Kosar ends up on the ground on that play. Let’s see what happens to him. Heat is on right there.>>He gets crunched. That’s down on that right elbow and right shoulder that had been bothering him. They’re also maybe looking at that right wrist of Kosar. He’s got a…>>And Mack is saying he’s all right. Can you believe that? He says, “I’m okay.” Bill Tessendorf, the trainer there, but watch the stretch. I’ll tell you, credit to the flexibility of the athlete. Credit to the flexibility of the athlete. I didn’t think he’d be able to stand up after that one.>>Mickey Sutton is set to return the kick of Bryan Wagner.>>10 men up for Buffalo. They love to take a run at these punts.>>And here they come. And he gets it off.>>And they’ve got a roughing the kicker call. [ Crowd cheering ]>>Sutton now — Two, three flags dropped downfield. Was it a roughing or a running into?>>Well, a running into. It’s Pike. It’s number 94, Mark Pike, whose shoulder hit the foot of the kicker.>>But it was fourth and 6, and running into is 5 yards and not an automatic first. Roughing carries the automatic first.>>I don’t think it’s going to be a first down, but let’s see what’s happened at the other end of the field now.>>43 yards on the kick. There’s the running into the kicker. Illegal use of the hands. He had them both against Buffalo, huh? And that would then be on the return. That would be on the return. The call, we believe, on John Hagy, number 22 of the Bills.>>We’ll go back and give you a chance to look at these plays, which we have for you. Here’s the kicker first. Wagner’s foot — watch the extension on the foot, and watch the shoulder of number 94, Mark Pike.>>There were multiple fouls on the defense. Running into the kicker, number 94 — declined. On the return, an illegal block on number 22, which will be accepted. 10 yards back and a first down.>>That’s the illegal block by Hagy. The reason, Charlie — you’re right — it was not going to be a first down anyway. They take the kick and tack the penalty on, knowing that they’re probably not going to get a chance to pin Buffalo back that deep with another punt.>>So Buffalo has the ball and a first down at their own 15-yard line. Bills lead it 14-10. Just over 6 1/2 minutes time remaining first half.>>Officials collecting their laundry, putting their handkerchiefs back.>>Takes some time.>>There were four of them on the field. They’re going to have to go to that double hanky system. And Bernie Kosar’s hand getting attention. They’re looking at the knuckle of the right hand. The knuckles of the throwing hand of Bernie Kosar.>>Thurman Thomas. There’s nothing there. It’ll be second down. Mike Johnson and Clay Matthews with the tackle.>>Clay Matthews a man who was so thrilled to see his team come back last week.>>Immortalized by the lateral.>>Almost. And Pagel warming up on the sideline. We’ll try and get information about Bernie Kosar’s hand, but Pagel obviously taking this opportunity. May get a call here. And we’ll keep you updated there.>>Kelly, again good protection. Drops this one over the middle to Kinnebrew. [ Whistles blow ] And he will carry out to the 21, maybe the 22.>>Kosar has had to get rid of that ball pretty quick all day long. Kelly, on the other hand, on several occasions, with what seemed like all day to throw the football. Kinnebrew’s first reception. He dropped one earlier in the ball game.>>Kosar has an ice pack on his throwing hand. Apparently a jammed finger is the report from the sideline. Not good news for the Browns.>>Third and 3. From the shotgun. At the end of the Dawg Pound, so you’ve got to shout louder. And it is incomplete. Don Beebe the intended receiver. The defender, Felix Wright, came over the top. I’m not sure the ball was catchable. There was contact but no flag.>>Well, we know for one thing the official decided it wasn’t a penalty. Beebe plowed under on that last play, and Kosar is a gamer. He’s not about to give it up here. He said, “Hey, we’re getting the ball back hand or no hand.” He’ll go back in there. The only thing that’ll bring him out is if he can’t throw the football, Charlie. Ohh, look out.>>And it will be downed at the 49-yard line of Cleveland by Mark Pike. 34 yards on the kick. The score — Buffalo 14 and Cleveland 10. 4:53 time remaining in the second quarter. The report on Kevin Mack — he has a pinched nerve. He will come back as soon as he gets his feeling back. Got some feelings in the pinched nerve. Oh, he’s back in, so he’s feeling all right. [ Whistle blows ] And he has about 3 yards. Let’s see how he runs. Shane Conlan with the tackle.>>Moments ago, we saw trainers working over Kevin Mack. Now Kevin Mack is working over the defense of the Buffalo Bills.>>From a football standpoint, that situation, you want the ball immediately. Go out, carry the ball, hit somebody, know that you’re okay, continue on in the ball game, forget about what happened. Is that right?>>Well, I would think so, and one of the dangers of playing on a day like today, Charlie, is injuries that happen in the first half tend to stiffen up. And in the cold — and this is cold enough to have its impact there — you may have problems if you’ve jammed in the first half of this game and have to go in and sit and then come out and play the second half.>>Tim Manoa in the ball game now, and the pass is low. Now, Bernie has thrown a couple of passes low in the ball game. You know, short hopped to the receiver.>>That one was knocked down by Cornelius Bennett, I think.>>Well, that could make it lower.>>Having Cornelius Bennett back on the field, he and Shane Conlan in tandem only two games all year — two full games anyway — were the two of these fine linebackers together on the field. And when they’re out there together, they have a wonderful spillover effect. Everyone seems to play better.>>Buffalo 14, Cleveland 10. Bleeding under 4-minute mark time remaining first half. Flag is down. Sideline pass is complete to Langhorne. He’ll have the first down if the play stands up.>>Looked to me like Cornelius Bennett may have been lined up offside, Charlie. The shoulders clearly appeared to be over the line anyway.>>Offside, number 55, defense. Lined up in the neutral zone. Declined. First down.>>Good call. You had your eyes on it.>>Here is the end of that pattern. Again, the slip. We mentioned that to you earlier. The advantage always, on that turf, to the player that knows where he is going. When you’re forced to react, you can’t worry about your footing, you simply react, and suddenly, your feet are out from underneath you.>>First down at the 44.>>Bernie calling audibles, resetting the backfield here. 9, 8, 7 — plenty of time. Ohh.>>And Kevin Mack, again, carrying two and three defensive players for another two yards to the 39. Gain of 5.>>Between plays, Kosar opening and closing that hand, Charlie. I’m watching him down there. He has still got some problems with that hand. You see him kind of reaching down and taking a hold of it here, but he was clenching his fist. You see him still opening and closing that right hand, his throwing hand.>>Redden the motion man. And here is Mack to the outside. First down at the 24. A gain of 15.>>Some excellent blocking, but some good running. They start what looks to be an inside play. They pull the offside tackle, Farren, all the way around. But Mack’s speed makes that play possible.>>And also, good footing once you get outside the hash marks.>>They’re in the sloppy end of this field, though. The right-hand side of this field is the worst part of the field, but again, advantage to the offensive players. They know where they’re going.>>Well, Kosar’s not sure on this play. Maybe he knew where they were going, but he had a feeling the defense also knew.>>Bud Carson, Marc Trestman… they’ll talk it over. You don’t want to make a mistake in this situation. On the scoreboard, you’re a few points down. Chance to punch it into the end zone for a 7 here and go ahead. Ah.>>See? See, Bernie has a good time. I like that about him. He has a good time, yes. There have been no turnovers in the ball game.>>And I think that’s significant on a day when, obviously, the ball is slick, the ball is hard to hang onto. These two teams have been extremely careful with the football. They’re running right into the Dawg Pound, and Kosar would like to treat them to a touchdown. Going deep. No, he’s not.>>He came low to the 14-yard line, and it is ruled a reception to Ozzie Newsome.>>I think they may take a look at that one, Charlie.>>Defense claiming it was a short hop.>>It looked like they wanted to go deep to Webster Slaughter. Kosar simply deciding the play was not open deep, and does what he does so well, which is to go to alternative receivers.>>He looked to the right flat and then came back to the tight end. If it stands — they’re calling for the chains to come in — that is Ozzie’s fourth reception for 36 yards.>>He’s going to be short of the first down. Let’s look at that catch. Remember, the Buffalo defenders screaming that the ball was scooped off the turf. I don’t agree. Looked like hands under that football to me.>>Hands and arm, a professional reception.>>You’ve got to love Ozzie. You’ve got to love the Oz. Red shoes and all. Here’s the look from the opposite side of the field. Got to get down low to look at that one.>>I wish we had a camera in the booth. Merlin is down on his knees looking at the bottom part of the screen. I couldn’t believe that!>>Well, I couldn’t believe what Ozzie did. It was a fine reception.>>Second down and 1. [ Whistles blow ] And the officials call for a time-out. No, it’s going to be the 2-minute warning. 2-minute warning to both benches. Bills lead it 14-10. Inside the first pair of the magic orange shoes, the left little toe of Eric Metcalf that he injured in the Houston game.>>Charlie, he has a special pad on the foot and on the toe. This is one that was made specially for him, but Bill Tessendorf, the trainer, made one by hand which was even better. But it’s designed to take the pressure off the joint of that little toe, and it fits, of course, inside of his shoe, and he has been very effective. Has not suffered from that toe problem here today. So it’s obviously working.>>Second down and 1. Kevin Mack, whoa! To the 4.>>Whoa! [ Crowd cheering ] If you saw the game against Houston, and you saw the last drive against Houston, you saw runs exactly like this. Power football. Four Bills it took to get him down, and he was still going forward when he hit the ground.>>9 carries, 47 yards. First and goal just inside the 4-yard line. Kosar. Held on by Ron Middleton! [ Crowd cheering ] Extra point is good. Cleveland regains the lead, 17-14.>>When you’re able to run the football with power up inside, you make room for a play-action pass like this. Kosar with time. But what a great catch by Middleton. He’s got a linebacker, Bennett, all over him and still controls the football.>>And for Middleton, this is his second touchdown reception of the season. The first one, he took the ball and he placed it in the crib of his little son.>>Look at that smile by Kosar. And let’s see if we get a smile from Bud Carson.>>Yes. And I suspect this football will go into that same crib. And the reaction of Buffalo head coach Marv Levy.>>Here’s Ron Middleton. Watch him. Just a fake up inside. Kosar back over here will get the ball to his tight end, number 87. Slips outside. Kosar all kinds of time. Touchdown.>>And the kickoff taken at the 3-yard line by Ronnie Harmon. And Harmon with a good return out to the 25. Tony Blaylock with the tackle for Cleveland. Just over a minute left in the first half. Cleveland 17, Buffalo 14. And the Bills have shown the capability twice to strike very quickly and from long range.>>They certainly have. You got to believe that the prevent defense, at least the depth of the defensive backs, will be significant here with only about a minute left on the clock.>>Dropped over the middle to Thurman Thomas, and Thomas with a flag down. Thomas is out to the 46-yard line. 22 yards on the play.>>That’s a late hit, Charlie. That will give the Bills excellent position here with 53 seconds left in this ball game.>>5-yard face mask call, number 57, defense. First down.>>That’s on Clay Matthews. And it’ll go to the Cleveland 48-yard line.>>An incidental face mask. That means he’s not using the mask at the end of the play, but his hand ends up on the mask, which is illegal. Quick pass again, Thurman Thomas.>>To the 43. Has 5. It’ll be second down and 5. Now, Buffalo has hit from 72 yards out and 33 yards out on both of their touchdowns. They’ll stop the clock with 46 seconds and the ball at the 43-yard line of Cleveland. Browns 17, Bills 14. Cleveland with no time-outs, Buffalo with two left.>>Ted Marchibroda on the left with the glasses on, the shorter of the two men on the left.>>And you said you talked to him, and before the game, he was talking as if he was going to be less conservative than in the past.>>Well, he’s been tabbed a little bit, as the offensive coordinator of this Buffalo Bill team, challenged for his conservative play calling. He said, “I don’t think we’ve really been fair to Jim Kelly. We’ve got to give him more opportunities to use his talents in this ball game.” And certainly, they came out throwing the football. Unfortunately, it was being dropped early. But he was able to get a couple of bombs in there, so…>>So stay with us at halftime. “NFL Live.” Bob and O.J. and Bobby and Ralph. They’ll be talking to Dan Reeves live, to Bubby Brister. And old Paul down in Erie.>>The one thing that we’ve not seen from this Brown defense — great pass rush. And they set a record with 45 sacks on this season.>>It is caught, and then it pops loose. Did the ground cause it?>>It did, Charlie. It certainly did.>>Yes.>>The minute he hits the ground with anything but his hand or his feet, that ball is dead.>>And he came right down on his head.>>Boy, whoo. Talking to Beebe just before this game, I asked him about this turf. He said, “This is like the turf I played on at Chadron State. He’s glad that’s not artificial turf, because he comes right down on top of his head. Ohh, that is a frightening shot. Frightening shot.>>And he is being worked on immediately.>>The reason I said he’s glad that this is not an artificial turf is that you don’t have much give on the artificial turf, and in a situation like that, even as well-trained an athlete as he is, with great flexibility, the possibility for damage… Certain parts of the body just not meant to play this game of football — oof.>>And the neck is not meant to bounce like that. And, boy, is that a great sign. Oh.>>He’s up.>>Yes.>>He is up.>>That may be the prettiest picture we’ve had all day.>>Now, they’re saying that they’re going to move the ball back. Does that mean that there was not a reception on the play?>>That’s what the — He did not come down with both feet.>>He did not have control of the football before his head hit the ground. Let’s take a quick peek at it. Now, the rule very simply says you’ve got to have two feet on the ground to establish control. All right, he’s in the air. The first thing to hit is his head, and he has to then establish, show he has control when he hits the ground. He does not have control. So it’s a good call by the officials.>>That’s a rule book call. And they’ll bring it back.>>Now, if he had had control before he went to the ground, then it would not have been –>>After review by replay, the play stands — incomplete pass. Third down.>>Can we take another look at it? Could we take one more look at it? Bring up the possibility of an interception. Did the ball hit the ground? But I think the minute his head hits the ground, that ball is downed, Charlie. I think it’s — The ball is downed at that point, isn’t it? No. Well, you may have a — Now we’ve got another can of worms here. They’re going to stop it again and ask exactly that question. Again, if the ball has not touched the ground and not been blown dead…>>The ball never touched the ground.>>…the ball is in play. [ Crowd booing ]>>Come on, defense!>>There’s the reverse angle. Now, the ball still has not touched the ground.>>Ball still has not touched the ground. But it has touched a player who is down. Now, is that considered touching the ground? No.>>No, it can hit on a –>>Ball is still live. Well, they’re not going to reverse it. The defense is going to have to do the job for the Browns. The Bills want the touchdown here.>>And this pass is complete to Andre Reed. [ Whistle blows ] And he is going to be marked short of the first down, and the Bills stop the clock with 27 seconds left in the first half.>>One of the things that the Browns have done defensively all day long is to put Minnifield one-on-one. You see him right there on Reed, number 31. He has tracked him all over the field. And, basically, what they have said to this Buffalo offense is, if you want to get to Reed, you’ve got to go through Minnifield to do it. Well, they did it a little earlier successfully, although on that play, it was not Minnifield one-on-one. But most all day, Minnifield has gone with Reed wherever he has gone in the formation.>>And Reed had a little problem at the end of the play holding on to the football. It’ll be fourth down, about a yard and a half in reality. 27 seconds left in the first half. Bills have it trailing by 3.>>Beebe seems to be all right on the sideline, but I will guarantee he’s got a sore neck and probably a headache, as well. Fourth down and 1. Kelly will scramble for it. No, he can’t get out! Grabbed by “Big Daddy” Carl Hairston. Got him on the ankle.>>I went in to talk to Big Daddy just before the game started. One of the assistant trainers went over and said, “Father Murphy is looking for you, Father Time.”>>Father Time they called him?>>Big Daddy, what a great career he’s had. One of the best trades this franchise ever made when they brought him over from the Philadelphia Eagles. He continues to lead, he continues to come up with big plays, and that was a very big play.>>37 years of age, and in his 14-year career has missed only 3 games. Cleveland from their own 40. They’ll touch it down. [ Whistle blows ] And that will be the last play of the first half. Championship football. This is the way it should be played.>>We’ve seen the Browns control the football very effectively with the short passing game and the running game. We’ve seen some big plays, as well, Charlie. That is good football.>>Cleveland 17, Buffalo 14. It is halftime. Hello, again, everybody, I’m Charlie Jones, alone with Merlin Olsen. And during halftime, we had a chance to talk with the replay officials through our producer, Larry Cirillo, as to the Don Beebe catch when he hit on his head and the ball popped loose, and Felix Wright then possibly had the interception. What they told us was that the whistle had blown on the play. Now let’s go back and look at the play. We won’t say anything, and just listen to the natural sound that we have. [ Whistle blows ] Now, the whistle — that whistle — came after what would have been an interception.>>There are other whistles on the field, and we have to alert you to that, but the whistle we heard certainly was — would indicate that there should have been an interception on that play. Charlie, a couple of pretty interesting things developing in this first half. No question that the Browns have been able to show much better balance in this first half. It’s helped them to control the football and control the clock. A lack of running game by Buffalo, which has run the football well through the early part of the year. They had some trouble in there for a few ball games getting the running game going. But they have only been able to run the ball today — Well, their best rusher only has 9 yards — Thurman Thomas. They only have 15 yards rushing in the first half. That’s not balance, and that’s a problem. One other thing that we are concerned about, or would be concerned about if we were on the Buffalo side of the line of scrimmage, is that they haven’t been able to take advantage of the fact that they’ve gotten Kelly so much time to throw the football. The rush is not getting there for the Browns. Michael Dean Perry is a power player, but number 92 in the middle of your screen has been controlled all day. Jim Ritcher right there one-on-one — and they have given him help all day — but Ritcher doing a great job on that play, and the Bills’ offensive line doing a great job of controlling Michael Dean Perry.>>How do you go back, then, and establish a running game in the second half?>>Well, you start running the football. [ Chuckles ] And I think we’re going to see that. I think we’re going to see that. I think Marv Levy will come out, and I think he needs to get a balance of the running game.>>But, also, I think, figuring into that equation is time of possession. Is that — Buffalo had the ball only a little over 8 minutes in the first half.>>Cause or effect, Charlie?>>Good question. Catch-22. Metcalf on the return. To the 20. And outside of the 30 to the 31-yard line. Now let’s look at those halftime statistics.>>The rushing yards, we talked about them. They are one-sided for the Browns. Kevin Mack the big difference there. Good passing yardage, both quarterbacks. No turnovers in this first half. Total yardage — 227. The Browns leading on that side. And look, Charlie, there’s the number you talked about, time of possession. But I think the balance of run and pass critical there for the Browns’ ability to control the football.>>Cleveland 17, Buffalo 14 as we start the second half. The winner to move into the championship game against the winner tomorrow between Pittsburgh and Denver. And the loser, home until next — till later on this year. Next season. Tim Manoa. 3 yards.>>Both of these teams started the year with such incredibly high expectations, and during times during this season looked very much like they were not going to be in the playoffs. In fact, played some very poor football games. This first half of football, the kind of football their fans expect them to play. The kind of performance they were hoping to see in this playoff game. It’s been a good first half. Let’s hope the second half lives up to its billing.>>Bruce Smith and Fred Smerlas on the last tackle. Second and 7. Metcalf in motion. Kosar looks to Metcalf, then goes back to the right, scrambles a bit. Throws back over the middle. He can see an entire field. He was throwing back to Webster Slaughter. I’m not sure that was a good choice, but at least he saw him.>>One of the most interesting passes we’ve seen of the day. Kosar running right and throwing back against his body. A dangerous pass. He gets away with it. Watch him, he gets away from the pressure here. He wanted to go outside to Metcalf. Nobody home. Watch the pass. Against the body. [ Chuckles ] That’s an awful-looking pass, but he has completed passes that look worse than that during this year. Third down long.>>He brings Langhorne across the formation.>>No first down — short.>>It’ll be short by a couple of yards.>>Responsibility of the receivers — know where first-down yardage is. And we’ve seen the Browns fail several times on that today. Langhorne has got to get himself first-down yardage. Webster Slaughter thought he was open. “Hey, hey! What about me?” He’s not quite open.>>Not as open as he thought he was. Wagner to kick. And he shanks this one. Off to the right, goes out of bounds. It won’t be that bad, but it’s really not that good either — 37 yards, but there’s no return.>>Tom Baugh has had some trouble snapping the ball. That one a little low and off to the side. Wagner adjusted, got the ball away, but was not necessarily the kind of kick you’re proud of. It was funny watching them warm up yesterday, because Baugh digs that ball down into the turf when he snaps it. And of course, it picks up some sand on this turf, and Wagner was getting a face full of sand when he caught that football up high. That one was down low. He didn’t have to worry about the sand getting in his face on that one.>>First down, Buffalo. Their own 27-yard line. First offensive opportunity of the second half. Shotgun.>>They open with a pass.>>Trailing by 3, and it’s dropped. Thurman Thomas. They opened the ball game dropping passes.>>I’m just trying to remember, Charlie. That looked like the same pass they opened the game with. They dropped two or three. In fact, three of the first three passes thrown by Kelly, all catchable and all dropped. And we start the same way here in the second half. And Kelly wisely over to say, “Don’t worry about it. We’ll get the next one.” He’s got Thomas all the way. You can’t get much more open than that.>>And the classic “he moved before he had the football.” Second down.>>Thomas off the field to the Buffalo sideline.>>Kinnebrew. 3 yards to the 30. It’ll be third down and 7. Mike Johnson with the tackle. Johnson, for the first time in three years, the number 2 tackler for the Cleveland Browns. Thane Gash got top honors with 134. Johnson 1 back at 133. And Kinnebrew is shaken up.>>Johnson one of those smart football linebackers that you love to have on the field for you. As they continue to look after Kinnebrew.>>And we have a time-out. Browns 17, Bills 14. This is Charlie Jones, Merlin Olsen. 12:39 and counting, time remaining third quarter. Third down and 8 at the Cleveland — at the Buffalo 30-yard line.>>Minnifield locked up on Andre Reed again, man-to-man. And Reed is free, but…>>Intercepted! Cleveland has the ball! [ Crowd cheering ] First turnover.>>Got it.>>Perfect positioning by Mark Harper.>>Harper right there on Ronnie Harmon, and the ball thrown short, as Kelly makes a bad choice. And they reach up and bite him.>>And Cleveland at the Buffalo 46-yard line leading by 3. They go back to the ground. It’s Tim Manoa. [ Whistle blows ]>>Takeaways and giveaways, they play such a major, major portion of this game.>>The only team in the playoffs with a negative takeaway ratio, the Bills. But they have been able to overcome a lot of those turnovers on the year because, Charlie, it’s basically what happens after you turn the ball over. And here are the numbers. Now, the Bulls actually able to come out with more points than their opponents out of the turnovers. But look at the Browns. That’s a big number — 46 points. An edge that has helped them throughout this season. Well, the first turnover of the day goes to the Browns. Here’s an opportunity for Bernie. Reverse.>>[ Chuckles ] Langhorne ran into the — He ran into the Bills. There was nowhere to go. I’m not sure they knew he had the ball, but they were in the area, and he had to try and make a sharp left turn, and there just wasn’t any room at all to operate.>>You had the feeling that some of the Bills were in the huddle with the Browns on that play. Nobody fooled on that play. They did successfully run the end around earlier, but look at this. All kinds of traffic, including some of his own players. Cody Risien, number 73, one of the blockers. What a good story he is. Playing throughout this season with a bad right knee, he continues to perform well at that right tackle position.>>And continues as surgery scheduled sometime soon.>>Almost weekly.>>Almost weekly. Third and 8. All alone is Slaughter at the 15! Touchdown! [ Crowd cheering ] And the extra point is good.>>When you bring a receiver across the field in motion and break him upfield, you can sometimes force an error. On this play, there are two defenders both sitting on number 88, Langhorne. And Webster Slaughter breaks away all by himself. Only Kelso, in the deep safety position, anywhere nearby, but he can’t get there in time to save the touchdown.>>Browns lead it 24-14. 3 plays, 46 yards. Set up by the interception. Mark Harper of Jim Kelly. The turnover leading to the score. First time this season that any quarterback has thrown for 3 touchdowns in a ball game against the Bills. It gets past Harmon. They’ll down it in the end zone and bring it out to the 20. Merlin?>>Webster Slaughter is going to come across right here and break up. Watch these two defenders jump on him — that’s Langhorne. And Slaughter is the man who breaks free. But here comes Langhorne. The two defenders both on Langhorne. Slaughter is free. But, Charlie, it’s no good unless Bernie can see him. And Bernie Kosar sees the field. If you’re open, he’ll get you the football.>>And the reaction of the quarterback. Oh, he does see him. Oh, his eyes have got to be like silver dollars. He knows immediately. That’s applause for Webster and also for himself. He said, “I got that one.” Thurman Thomas from the 20. And the reaction of Webster Slaughter and his teammates.>>I wonder if they’ve practiced that during the week.>>Oh, they have to, have to.>>The timing is critical.>>[ Laughs ] Working in tandem scoring the touchdown and in the celebration.>>Reggie Langhorne able to say, “I got these two. Webby, you’re on your own.”>>Second and 5. [ Whistle blows ] Thurman Thomas close to the 30. Now, when they mark the ball down, if it’s touching where the chalk is, it’s automatic ’cause it came off a touchback, started at the 20, yes, Merlin?>>Just a point in reflection, Charlie. We’ve got to wonder how much the absence of Leonard Smith is hurting that Bills secondary. They’ve been chewed by the passing game badly. And certainly, you have an experienced man in there in his place in Dwight Drane, but he is not the starter who’s been in there all year long.>>Third down and short. First down. Larry Kinnebrew. The impression now, the Bills coming back, doing what you talked about that they had not done in the first half. Coming back, they’ve got to establish a running game. The margin’s 10. That’s not too much. A lot of time.>>They certainly would like to control, as they have in the first half, number 92, Michael Dean Perry. And he takes the brunt of the double-team. Hull and Ritcher both bang into him, he spins to the ground. But there go the legs of big Kinnebrew, Larry Kinnebrew. 256 pounds worth. First down.>>Now Kelly to throw on first down. He goes deep. Has a man roaming free. And it is incomplete. Thurman Thomas got loose down the sideline, and Mark Harper was late coming over.>>This is one of the advantages this Cleveland secondary has. They really have four corners who have enough speed to cover man-to-man.>>He’s open.>>Harper is going to be coming across right there. There’s Harper. Harper the man arriving late, but that’s a situation where he is the deep protection for the bump-and-run. Thurman Thomas has not had a sparkling first half.>>Missed assignment, though, and the Bills do not capitalize on it. Second and 10 at the Buffalo 34. 8 1/2 minutes to go in the third. They take a time-out. Cleveland leads by 10, 24-14. The man who will be calling the plays — Ted Marchibroda.>>He’s put the ball into Jim Kelly’s hand, as he promised to do. Their first-down selection — 8 passes and 4 runs. Unfortunately, several of those passes dropped, and they have not been able to sustain drives.>>The Bills are averaging 6.9 yards on first down. That’s because they’ve had a couple of long ones. Second and 10. Buffalo trails by 10. 8 1/2 to go in the third. Going back to that far side, where he had a man open a moment ago, and this completion to Andre Reed. Minnifield chases him out. He’s got the first down.>>That is a wonderful battle going on between two great athletes, as Andre Reed and Minnifield just continue to hammer at each other. Moments ago, it was Minnifield winning the battle, but now it’s going to be Andre Reed. Reed is going to drive him inside and then explode to the outside. Minnifield just fractions of an inch away. But Reed has the first down.>>Fourth reception, 104 yards for Andre Reed. Of course, including the opening touchdown of 72 yards. Establishing the ground game, and we establish some flags. Thurman Thomas and now “Bubba” Baker.>>5-yard face mask foul, number 60, defense. The 5 yards will end up in a first down.>>Tacked on to the end of the run, called on Al Baker.>>Thurman Thomas showing you some running power. And really the first time he’s really been able to generate a rushing shot inside. There’s the shot. Bubba Baker coming over. You saw how quickly he took the hand off the mask. Gotcha. Unfortunately, it’s still a penalty. First down on the 40.>>And throwing on first down. Kelly going deep, and he overthrows. Ho-ho! He was going to Keith McKeller. McKeller was trying to keep Frank Minnifield from having any kind of an opportunity to go for an interception.>>Some of the folks down at the Dawg Pound wanted offensive interference. And the officials saying, “Uncatchable ball.” I guess it works both ways on that situation. Minnifield, as we’ve mentioned, for most of the day, isolated on Reed, Andre Reed. On that play, back to normal defense. He ended up with a tight end, McKeller.>>And on the sideline, Bernie Kosar continues to throw when Buffalo’s offense is on the field.>>He wants to keep that elbow loose. Concerned about the swelling in that elbow, and you notice he’ll be pumping that hand, too. Dual problems on that throwing arm.>>Timing pattern, has a man open. Did he see it in time? No. Lofton did not turn around in time to see the ball. And he was open. Felix Wright was a little late getting there.>>Hanford Dixon gets the bump. Felix Wright coming over to protect deep. But he is in the seam. Lofton is in the seam, and the ball is in the air. Lofton late dropping that head back. You picked it beautifully. And simply did not make the adjustment to the football.>>Kelly has completed only 9 of 20 for 189 yards. I think he’s had a good game. His receivers have not had a good game. There have been — I can think of four, maybe five passes that should have been caught, including that one when he was open.>>A very fair criticism.>>He’s thrown for a pair of touchdowns, he’s been intercepted once. He goes over the middle, and it’s incomplete. Is there a flag down? Yes, on the far side of the 34.>>Thurman Thomas hammered as he went up for that football, and it will go against the Browns defense. So this drive will be sustained on a third and long.>>Holding, number 29, defense. 5 yards, first down.>>”Top Dawg” Handford Dixon is furious. He’s in the bump-and-run, and the bump part of that’s so critical. You see the grab right there. He grabs him by the shirt, and Lofton will break away, but the official already had the flag in the air.>>At the 35-yard line. First down. Kind of a sputtering drive, but it continues. Kinnebrew. Ball is loose! [ Crowd cheering ] Cleveland has it! Felix Wright with the recovery. Kinnebrew could not hold on. Second turnover.>>And it comes at the end of a drive in which the Bills had finally been able to establish some kind of flow. A couple of good runs, they controlled the ball down the field, but then they hand it back. Let’s watch the hit. Ball will come free, rolling free, and Felix Wright, number 22 — Two Bills with a chance. Howard Ballard there, Devlin was there. But Felix Wright the man that comes up with it.>>Browns first down, their own 25. Kevin Mack. Ball is loose! Bernie goes for it — no!>>I don’t think Bernie’s got it.>>He didn’t. The Bills have it back! Mark Kelso!>>They call Kelso “Bubblehead” and “Gazoo.” He wears that funny helmet, but he sure looks good when he gets his hands on that football.>>That’s a protective shield to protect him from a concussion.>>Hand-off inside. Mack just gets that ball broken out. And Kosar will have it momentarily, but it’s knocked out of his hand, and Kelso will come up with the football, 26-yard line. And Buffalo back on offense.>>No turnovers in the first half. Three already in the first 7 1/2 minutes of the second half. Pass is complete. But not a lot of yardage. Andre Reed pulled down by David Grayson. Grayson, who has been on IA for the last five weeks with that neck problem, back as a starter. And the score, Cleveland by 10 with just over 7 minutes to go in the third.>>Charlie, the late return by Kevin Mack. You have to ask whether he is really in midseason form. Certainly, in some of the runs, he’s in running form, but he has had a problem coughing that football, and he coughs it up in a very critical situation here.>>Pressure on the Browns’ defense now.>>Thurman Thomas. Big play, back side, Carl Hairston.>>In Bud Carson’s defense, you put those tackles inside, and you try and get quick pressure out of those tackles. Big Daddy Hairston able to do it on that play. Grabbed the ankles from behind and pulled him down. Third and long.>>Third down and 8. The ball at the 19-yard line. You were on the field before the game. What is the footing at that side, if they go left. I know, on the right side, the near side, it’s not that good.>>It’s sloppy on both sides down there. It’s the worst footing on the field. Marchibroda has made his call. Let’s see what Kelly does.>>From the shotgun. Fake of a blitz. Over the middle, Thurman Thomas. Juggled it, held on. He’s to the 5. It’ll be first and goal to go.>>Thurman Thomas had to be saying, “Not again. I’m not going to drop this one. He’s put a number of them on the ground that looked like easy catches today. This one was not an easy catch.>>Felix Wright with the tackle.>>You’ll see him bounce this football and control it. It comes up out of his hands, again taking his eye off of that football. But he’s able to keep it in hand. He’s down just inside the 5. Another blitz, and Banks tried to pick Thomas up on the blitz. We saw that earlier in the game.>>That’s deadly. [ Whistle blows ] David Grayson with the defensive play, stopping Thurman Thomas. Grayson, as many of you know, he’s trying to lead a little cheer with the Dawg Pound. “Come on, we need some help.” His dad played in the old AFL.>>He certainly did, and he was a great player.>>Yes.>>You’ve got to wonder about — The folks in the Dawg Pound have got to be a little confused. They’ve been told, you’ve got to mind your manners. We’ve got to show people that this is a good stadium to play in. And then Grayson’s saying, “Yeah, but yell.” Make it a little tough on these — on the opponents that are coming this way. They will, they will here.>>Second and goal at the 6. Over the middle. Incomplete.>>No.>>James Lofton the intended receiver. Handford Dixon was there for the defense.>>Far side, you’ll see Lofton break away on Dixon there. And Hanford doing a good job of shadowing him, but he was open and clear momentarily. Kelly had that ball right into his face mask, but Lofton unable to control it.>>Third down, goal to go. You think like an offensive coordinator. If you don’t score here, then you go for the field goal. You trail by 10. You want to come away with points.>>We’ve seen Kelly run the ball in situations like this early in the year.>>Thurman Thomas — touchdown. And Buffalo pulls within 4. Extra point to come, and 4:38 left in the third. And it was set up by a turnover. The fumble recovery by Mark Kelso. [ Whistle blows ] And once again, it was a linebacker that was called upon — Clay Matthews — to cover Thurman Thomas.>>Matthews one of the best coverage linebackers in the league, but no match for Thomas, one of the best receivers from the backfield in the NFL.>>And the extra point is good.>>Shotgun snap. Play will come from the left. 57, Matthews, trailing on that play, as Thomas just too much speed on the play.>>And the reaction of Marv Levy — all right! He does look like Pat Paulsen, though. I really have to say that. He does look like him. 24-21. The sixth time this year that the Bills’ quarterback has thrown for 3 touchdowns in a game. There’s the drive — 21 yards, 6 plays. Kelso set it up with his fumble recovery. And Kelly now 12 of 24. He’s thrown for 212 yards, 3 touchdowns. He’s been intercepted 1 time. You say Bills quarterbacks have thrown for 3 touchdowns — what’s the high? Kelly’s thrown for 5. That was in a game against Houston. 24-21. Metcalf is the deep back with Keith Jones and Oliphant up on the wing. Metcalf at the 10. To the 20. 30! 40! 90 yards! [ Crowd cheering ] Flag is down.>>Running into the kicker, number 37, defense. The point is good. 5-yard penalty on the kickoff.>>And Bahr is limping badly as he heads to the sideline.>>Call on Nate Odomes. And the margin has returned to 10. Cleveland 31, Buffalo 21.>>Here is the shot on Bahr. It’s Odomes, number 37, coming in. He was pushed in, he says. But he hits right on the kicking knee, on the kicking leg. And you see Bahr grab for that knee. Against the team that has led the league for 3 years in kickoff coverage, speed still kills you. And Eric Metcalf has speed.>>First ever kickoff return in postseason for Cleveland. Notice how he slowed up? The time — how long did it take him? Well, the clock started when the ball was kicked off. From the time the ball was kicked till the time that he crossed the goal line — 15 seconds. That’s moving. I mean, that’s really moving. 31-21. And Bryan Wagner will kick off. Ronnie Harmon…>>Yeah.>>…is back. And he will down it in the end zone. Now let’s go back to the Buffalo touchdown.>>Charlie, a chance to look at what Bud Carson calls his full-press defense. Watch this — 10 men up. But when you put 10 men up, you have a chance to put people in trouble. This is Banks. He’s going to have to cover Thomas coming out of the backfield. Banks is a defensive end. There’s no way he can cover Thomas. And that sets up the next throw that carried them right into the end zone. Now, that was the play that really set up Kelly. And here is the throw into the end zone for the touchdown. That could continue, as Buffalo will try to exploit those defenses further. And the ball bounces again out of the hands of a Buffalo wide receiver.>>David Grayson with the coverage on Andre Reed. It’ll be second and 10. Buffalo in possession at their own 20. Quarterback comparisons. They should factor in drops though. Kelly 12 of 25, 212. Kosar 16 of 24, 223. 3 touchdown passes apiece. That 1 interception.>>Kelly had 8 in the last 4 games of the season. Played the first half here today without one, but…>>And Kosar had 0 in the last two — Minnesota, Houston. Both set season highs in interceptions in 1989, however.>>This one is caught near the 35-yard line. James Lofton, and he is cut down by Felix Wright.>>Number 86, James Lofton, working on Hanford Dixon. And if Dixon misses the bump in that situation, man-for-man, he has a problem. Lofton simply has more speed. And if he can get off the line in that tight bump-and-run, he can create some real problems for this man-to-man defense.>>Lofton 3 receptions, 68 yards. First down Buffalo at their own 34-yard line, trailing by 10, 31-21, with 3 1/2 to go in the third. Free play. Browns were offsides. Quick pop up the middle, Thurman Thomas. And he is stopped by Mike Johnson. They may take the penalty though. They’ll get 5 and it’ll be first and 5. The line of scrimmage was the 34. They could take it to the 39. It’ll be first and 5.>>Offsides, number 60, defense. 5 yards, still first down.>>Call on Al Baker.>>Kelly saying, “I’ve got a hard count, too.” Kosar, as you remember, if you were with us early in the ball game, able to draw the Buffalo defense offside on several occasions.>>Total yards are creeping ever closer. Thurman Thomas. And he is pushed back.>>Michael Dean Perry.>>Who we haven’t seen a lot of.>>We have not, and they have been committing several people to keep him on the line of scrimmage. Extremely powerful, extremely quick. He’ll come right at you on this play from the left-hand side of your screen — nose section of your screen. Right there, you see number 92 pushing, pushing? Big Daddy Hairston also in there, but that’s Michael Dean. Call him gator arms. Those short, powerful arms. He used them very well on that — I mean, you call him gator arms if he’s not there. You don’t call him that if he’s close by.>>Second and 4. Wanting to go deep, pulling it down, hitting Thurman Thomas. Thomas has the first down. He continues to the 48-yard line of Cleveland. 12 yards, first down. Clay Matthews had to pick him up.>>You get the ball into the hands of a good runner like Thomas, who was out in the open, he’s got room to open it up. And again, Bud’s defense, Bud Carson’s defense committing great pressure. They have had trouble getting pressure on Kelly. They’ve had to start committing more and more people to put the squeeze on Kelly. And that puts tremendous pressure on those man-to-man coverages in the secondary.>>First down at the Cleveland 48. Good protection — knocked away.>>Chris Pike, number 75.>>6’8″, 325 pounds.>>He is big.>>Visually — I remember I got in an elevator with him, and a whole shadow fell across the elevator. You couldn’t even see the elevator door, he’s that big.>>Well, he’s big enough to reach up and swat down this pass.>>It’ll be second and 10. Chris Pike.>>There he is, middle of your screen, 75. Watch that. Good stretch. That ball thrown relatively high.>>A rejection.>>A rejection, yes.>>Kelly going deep!>>Oh.>>Incomplete. Reaching out for it…>>Is that McKeller?>>Keith McKeller, yes, the tight end.>>They talk about his raw talent. Came in, only one year of college football, but he has really come on this season. Being used more and more. A tight end with the speed to get deep, and again, the mismatch. He’s on a linebacker, although that’s not as big a mismatch as putting a fast running back on a linebacker. Linebacker should be able to cover most tight ends in the league. Clay Matthews was there, but that ball was well-thrown.>>Third down and 10. Played like a playoff game should be played. Penalties even on both sides — 5 for 30 yards. Thomas is open, and he pulls it down! Thurman Thomas at the 21-yard line. And this time it was Robert Lyons who was covering him. Felix Wright had him early, and Robert Lyons had him late. They still couldn’t stop him.>>The absence of Robb Riddick forced Buffalo to go to Thurman Thomas more and more as a receiver. You can see why they want to do it. Excellent catch on that play. Two defenders there, neither one of them can make the stop. And for the first time in this half — one of the first times — we saw some pressure on Kelly. Kelly was knocked down as he threw that ball, but still got it on target.>>And you could tell from the numbers, Thurman Thomas now involved in the ball game. Was not involved that much in the first half.>>Second effort. Good second effort inside by Kinnebrew.>>With Johnson and Gash on the stop.>>Late in the ball game, the big power back will get you in trouble. Let’s go back to that previous play and get a chance to watch the action on the line of scrimmage. You see the miss right there. If you’re playing bump-and-run coverage one-on-one, as Robert Lyons was, you’ve got to get the bump. And if you miss the bump and let the man off clean, you’re in trouble.>>And they’ll take the count down to the end of the third quarter. The margin is 10. Cleveland 31, Buffalo 21. Five different defenders have been unable to cover Thurman Thomas. Can they stop him in the fourth quarter? We’ll find out.>>Moved out from his position here to the wideout. He’s supposed to get the bump right here. They miss him on the bump, and watch how quickly he breaks away. Robert Lyons trailing from behind, but he is not going to be able to get there in time. And Kelly throws a perfect strike. Boy, I tell you, it is frightening to try and catch up when you’ve got a treacherous surface to begin with. Second down. Kelly trying to punch it into the end zone.>>At the Brown 15. Thurman Thomas. And then he’s pushed back. But he will go to the 11. Close to the first down. Now, with that, he has, total rushing and receiving, 116 yards. And he had only 9 yards rushing in the first half. And he has picked up 80-plus in the second half. And the line scores leading to the 10-point margin. This drive started back at the 20, and this is the answering drive to the 90-yard kickoff by Eric Metcalf. Even the ball looks kind of messy today, doesn’t it?>>Charlie, that’s the area of the field that was sodded. There’s more grass down there by far, although if you were grazing some cattle, they would not get much to eat on that field. Most of what you see is painted dirt. But there is a little bit of grass in the area that was sodded after baseball season.>>When we walked out there yesterday, it smelled a little like you were going into a bar. Third quarter statistics.>>Or a circus tent. One or the other. And of course, those statistics have evened out a great deal, certainly in the possession areas. And in the rushing areas, as the Bills have come back to balance out their offense. And, boy, those one-sided possession numbers looking a lot better for the Bills right now. They would feel a lot better if they could put a big 7 up on that board. Third down and a very short situation here. You’ve got a big back, Kinnebrew, in there. You certainly do. Jamie Mueller. They’ve got the fullbacks in there, the full backfield. Two fullbacks in. Oh, he’s going to be short, Charlie.>>Kinnebrew is cut down! Mike Johnson makes the stop. It’ll be fourth down and still a yard to go.>>He’s gonna go for it. Boy, you could read his lips there. Marv Levy very simply — Chuck Dickerson there. Let’s watch –>>No, he’s waving the kicking team in.>>Oh, I thought he was going to go for it.>>I did, too, from the sign.>>But a great play by Johnson inside. I thought I saw Levy say, “Let’s go for it.” Maybe he had second thoughts.>>No, I think he did. I think he meant, to the team, “Go on out for it, kick it.”>>Oh, all right.>>I’m not sure.>>Well, whatever. They have the field goal kicking unit on the field.>>Norwood — his first attempt. From 30 yards out. Kidd is holding. And this is about the spot — a little inside the spot where Bahr slipped earlier.>>Ohh. Oh. He just barely stayed on top of that one. That kick would not have been good from any distance at all. But Norwood maybe respecting the footing out there, being very careful, just kind of hopping into this one. Watch him. Let’s watch his plant foot. He’s solid. But his kicking form has changed on this dicey turf.>>13:52 time remaining in the fourth quarter, in January, in Cleveland, in a game that has already produced 55 points. And weather conditions are ideal for this time of the year. This truly is shirt-sleeve weather. There’s no wind down in the stadium. There’s some above the stadium on the flag. And the temperature at kickoff was in the mid-30s.>>It’s still there, and this field has actually — Charlie, this is the best I’ve seen this field late in the year. As bad as the field is, it’s great for this time of year.>>Metcalf. At the 7. Remember, he went 90 a moment ago. Not this time. But the anticipation was there.>>I’ve played on this turf in a championship game, and I remember very well how thick the mud was on this field for that game.>>The Browns in the second half. From their own 31, a punt, a touchdown, and a fumble. And that all led, of course, to 7 points for the Bills.>>Turning back a ball that they had just taken on a fumble.>>And add, of course, to that Metcalf’s 90-yard kickoff return in 15 seconds for the score.>>Right now, I would think that the Browns would like to go back to the formula that they exercised in the first half — ball control and balance and eat that clock.>>Start to work on it. You lead by 7. And they come out throwing. Dropping it underneath the coverage.>>But they are throwing controlled passes.>>And this is complete to Kevin Mack. Shane Conlan with the tackle.>>That’s what Walt Corey talked about in our conversations with him yesterday. He said, “This offense reminds me of San Francisco because they just pick at you and pick at you.” There’s Walt Corey. Been around a long time. Started as a linebacker for the old Dallas Texans.>>Yep, 1960, I sure do.>>He has done a great job. He did a great job with defenses in Kansas City, and he has done a great job with this Buffalo defense.>>Second and 5. Redden. Redden pops clean, has a first down. Barry Redden picks up the first down. 10 yards.>>Bruce Smith, who was so dominant in the early part of the game… Ted Banker, who is a hog guard, steps out, puts a little drive, and puts Bruce Smith where?>>That’s a pancake.>>Not on his back. Well, that’s — We have seen Bruce Smith put a lot of people on their backs today. That was his term.>>But you’ve heard that terminology. Now you know exactly what it means. First down at the 47.>>Bruce is probably mad right now, too.>>Then I’d go the other way. The throw is low but caught. Yes, and it’s Ron Middleton. Middleton, who has a touchdown reception in the ball game, pulls this one in, scoops it off of the sand.>>We talked about the young premature baby and the story, which has been such a heartwarming story for this team. Middleton’s emergence as a fine blocker has been important, but showing that he can catch the football certainly will give him a shot at that tight end job. Ozzie Newsome, who’s been in that tight end position so many years, will step up into the Browns organization, the front office, little bit of coaching. Middleton is hoping that his name is going to be on that depth chart for many years to come.>>Second and 6. Kevin Mack. To the 44. It’ll be third down and about 1. [ Whistle blows ] And now the officials stop the clock. And this just to let everybody unpile.>>Talked to Kevin Mack, and I think that his story, well-known throughout the country. Spent a good part of the early part of the season on suspension by the commissioner, ended up in jail for 35 days. Finally out, finally rehabbed from a knee operation after he left the jail facility. And now able to get out and play. And I asked him, I said, “Kevin, after what you went through early in the year, this must not seem very difficult.” He said, “No.” He said, “This is easy compared to some of what I had to go through early in this season.” Well, I think the Cleveland organization is very proud — and Art Modell has said it — of the kind of comeback that Kevin Mack has made. But Mack himself very conscious of the fact that he let his team down early in this year. This is not the story of a hero, but it is the story of a good comeback.>>Third and 1. Officials reset the clock, put 5 seconds back on it. Here is Redden.>>Ohh, Redden changing that ball from one hand to another, and the spot will determine whether he picked it up. He may not have it. Redden was shifting that ball from one hand to another. And he’s trying to run to the outside. Boy, you need to get upfield. Bruce Smith.>>Oh, he almost lost it when he was trying to shed a tackler.>>No, it’s not Bruce Smith. It’s Cornelius Bennett, number 55, who had shot inside and got his hands up and almost stripped that ball away. And he has it, whoa, by a nose.>>Cleveland, on third downs, third and short — you know, 3 yards or less — they’re perfect, 3 of 3 on the short third-down conversions that you feel like you must make.>>We’ve given credit to some of the running backs. Let’s credit that offensive line of Risien and Jones, Rakoczy and Banker and Farren, and you saw Banker a few moments ago. They are blocking their hearts out up front, and they’re working against a very difficult and physical Buffalo defense.>>The clock starts to work its way into the scenario. 10:16 and counting in the game. The margin at 7. Cleveland leads. They have the ball. Kosar sidearms it, and it’s complete.>>Control passing. Many of these kinds of plays you almost judge as running plays. Not high risk on them, and if you can throw the ball as accurately as Bernie Kosar can… Watch this. Just a little down, down, stop right in the open spot there. And Slaughter — Not Slaughter.>>Langhorne.>>Langhorne almost made a mistake. You’ve got to work back to the football. If you don’t work back to the football, you give the defender a chance to come in and steal it.>>This now becomes the major issue, particularly for the Buffalo Bills — the time remaining in the game. Second and 5. Kevin Mack. First down. And the clock continues on it inexorable march. Talley with the tackle.>>A play designed to go right up the middle. There was no hole there, but Kevin Mack will make an adjustment. Watch this — slides outside. And the line does a good job of adjusting. He’ll run out of one tackle right there and pick up some extra yards. Paul Farren, number 74, on Bruce Smith, and watch Smith come inside, and Farren will keep him inside. Excellent play, and an excellent adjustment by Farren on Bruce Smith.>>Redden on the right side. And he’s going to get a yard, maybe 2. And we’re now down to 8:20 seconds.>>This drive has already eaten off substantial time off the clock, and if you are a part of that Buffalo Bill defense right now, you’re thinking turnover. Strip the football. And Levy, and I’m sure Buffalo fans who have had such incredibly high expectations for this team, a team picked by many, including me, to go to the Super Bowl wondering if they’re going to have a chance to live up to those expectations.>>And Cleveland has used more than 5 minutes on the drive. And Buffalo is looking at 2, maybe 3 more possessions. And that dwindles along with every tick of time. Barry Redden. Jeff Wright with the stop. Third down. 29-yard line. Third and 10. When you look back at a game, you can pick key plays. When you look back, this could well be one of them. Tipped. Incomplete. Fourth down, and that also stops the clock. Leon Seals.>>And we have a few fisticuffs breaking out in the backfield for the Browns. Charlie, they put the pressure on there, did some gambling defensively, brought the blitz against Kosar, and enough bodies in those gaps that they were able to get a hand on that sidearm throw.>>No flags were thrown. And now Matt Bahr comes in with a field goal attempt. He has hit from 45, missed from 45, and remember, they do have a fake off of this.>>They also have a kicker who was hit on his last kicking attempt and had some problems with his kicking knee. He looked to run out without any problem, but that may bother him on this attempt.>>46 yards. The backup quarterback, Pagel, is the holder. The Dawg Pound says it all. [ Crowd cheering ] [ Barking ] 34-24. This is Charlie Jones and Merlin Olsen. Cleveland 34, Buffalo 24. 6:50 left in regulation time.>>That was a big field goal that Matt Bahr was able to put through the uprights. They were also able to take a great deal of time off the clock. Buffalo needs to be concerned about getting points now, but they need to do it quickly.>>That’s a nice sight. You saw Don Beebe, who was upended in the first half, back as one of the return men. Ronnie Harmon back with him. They’ve been back there throughout the second half. Harmon from the 10. Slips one tackle, does a little sidestep. And returns about 12 yards to the 22.>>That was Mike Oliphant forcing the play. Oliphant, in that trade for Earnest Byner — and there are a lot of folks still second-guessing the Browns for that trade — but Oliphant showing his worth on special teams, as he came down quickly to make the force on that play.>>The Bills in the second half starting at their 27, 20, 21, and 20. Interception, fumble, touchdown, and field goal. And now they start from their 23. Complete to Thurman Thomas, who has taken control of the offense of the Bills in the second half. What a game he is having. Now hurry-up offense.>>Late in the season, Kelly had looked almost exclusively to Andre Reed when he got in trouble. Today, his eyes have gone back to Thurman Thomas, especially here in the second half.>>Incomplete. A little short. Beebe the intended receiver. Let’s go back to Thurman Thomas coming out of the backfield.>>Thomas able to run the ball so effectively, but extremely quick in getting out of the backfield and then making good adjustments. Wide open on that play. Mike Johnson coming up to try and make the tackle on him, but he avoids him very easily.>>The screen to Harmon. And he spins out of one tackle. Still is going! He’s got the first down. He got 5, 6, maybe 7 yards on his own. 45-yard line, first down.>>Harmon a big-play receiver and a big-play runner. Used almost exclusively on long-yardage situations. And Kelly quickly back. No huddle.>>Dropped underneath it goes. Thomas turns, sees a defender. Moves past him. That was Clay Matthews again having to pick up Thurman Thomas out of the backfield. First down, gain of 15, and the Bills are on the move.>>And fans here booing. They don’t like the choice that Bud Carson has made here. And Carson, in essence, is saying, “We’re going to give you yardage for time on the clock.” They’re still playing deep. They’re still opening room inside for Thomas. Will he go there again? Yes, right back.>>All day.>>They’re trying to strip that football away, and Matthews, the first man there, trying to jerk the arms away from that football, but Thomas said, “Hey, you’re not going to cover me. Let’s get the football over here. I can make some yards.”>>At the 34-yard line. Second down.>>They can’t allow for those one-on-one matchups with Thomas.>>Kelly to Thurman Thomas again. Slips a tackle, has the first down, heads for the sideline. He’ll stop the clock. Moves to the 25-yard line, and he’s got to be exhausted. Clocked stopped with 4:40 left to go. That’s a lot of time. The margin is 10 points.>>You see the gasping for air there. Thurman Thomas has had a very hard second half. A little screen play here. Right over the middle. Thomas sees pressure inside, gets away from one tackle by Harper, and, well, quickly back to action.>>Ronnie Harmon, same spot. Same play. Has the first down and more, inside the 5. The hurry-up offense starting back at the Bills’ 23. Thane Gash saves the touchdown. 3-yard line. 22 yards. First down and goal to go.>>Bud Carson is very unhappy with his defense right at this moment.>>Player down. Cleveland player is down. The clock is stopped with 4:19 left to go in the game. Cleveland by 10. Buffalo at the 3.>>Watch the cord and the headset on Carson’s head. And then rest of it. And here is the reason why he is so angry. They’re simply not getting up and tackling on these plays. They’re not covering. Thomas, just a little check-down screen here. Now watch the missed tackle right here. A flying tackle, a miss by number 22, Wright. And then he’ll get outside and get out of bounds. That’s Blaylock pushing him out of bounds. Blaylock, by the way, injured on the next play and is still down on the turf.>>Thus far in the ball game, Jim Kelly has completed 21 of 37 for 339 yards, 3 touchdowns, and an interception. And this man, Thurman Thomas, 10 receptions, 127 yards, and a touchdown. Now you can add to that 10 rushes for 28 yards. So that’s 155 yards of total offense. And my guess is that about 140 of the 155 all coming in the second half. He has played brilliantly in the second half after being completely shut down — only 9 yards rushing on 3 carries — in the first half.>>I think part of that, Charlie, perhaps because they were defensing him differently in the first half, made some changes that gave him some more room in the second half. Certainly, on this series, they were playing too deep. The secondary coach, Jed Hughes, one of those that Carson went to immediately to ask what in the world is going on in that secondary.>>And now the stretcher is coming out, as they’re still administering to Tony Blaylock. And of course, as soon as we have any official word, we will pass that on to you.>>We’ll look at what happened on that play, and perhaps you can see, along with us. Harmon, number 33. Blaylock, left side of your screen, 24, goes into the knees and catches a knee in the helmet. It was the knee of one of his own teammates, and you see him reaching for his head. Here’s the play from another angle, and it’s 30, Thane Gash. And it’s Gash’s knee that actually drives the helmet back. But they’re being very careful, as well they should. They have x-ray facilities here. If there’s any question, he’ll be taken immediately to a hospital. We would hope that the injury is not serious, and we’ll bring you information as soon as we can.>>Today’s telecast is presented by authority of the National Football League. It is intended for the private use of our audience. Any rebroadcast or other use of this telecast without the express written consent of the Cleveland Browns and the National Football League is prohibited. This game is the property of the National Football League, Buffalo Bills, and Cleveland Browns, all rights reserved.>>One of the things that happens to a team standing around like this, they tend to get stiff. It’ll certainly affect both of these teams, but Buffalo, after surging down the field, has had to wait for a long time now. They got a first down inside the 5-yard line, but they are affected, as all players are on the field, by the sight of the trainers and the stretchers going out. That’s a sight that rips at you when your profession and your livelihood depends on your physical health.>>Offensively, for the Buffalo Bills, Andre Reed and Thurman Thomas have combined for 260 of Buffalo’s 387 yards. That is 60% of their yardage. And Thomas does have 100 yards receiving on 8 receptions in the second half alone. As they continue to work on Tony Blaylock. Time remaining — 4:19. And a game in which we expected to be cold and blustery, but has turned out to be rather pleasant. Browns lead by 10 with 4:19 left. They continue to work on Tony Blaylock. Now he is being taken off of the field on a stretcher. And as we get back to the game — now, you mentioned this, but — do the players try and block this out when they go back to play?>>Hardest thing in the world.>>It’s a factor of what you do.>>You sense, when a player goes down, there’s a feeling. Players know instinctively when an injury is serious. I mean, you can almost feel it. And when a player goes down, and he’s hurt, and they’re rushing out all kinds of aid, you try and keep your mind separate from that, but it’s almost impossible to do, because you want to keep your concentration on the game, and yet, your thoughts are with that injured player. And it’s a real battle of will to try not to look. I’ve seen players in this situation walk away, and we’ll see if Buffalo has been able to maintain their offensive edge.>>First and goal at the 3. Thurman Thomas back in. Kelly throws. Thurman Thomas has it. Into the end zone for the touchdown.>>Kelly’s pass complete to Thurman Thomas. Touchdown, Buffalo.>>How many times is Thurman Thomas going to hurt you before you finally say, “Let’s find that 34 and put about three guys on him and make Kelly throw to someone else”? Carson cannot believe it. And this crowd is hushed. This crowd has been burned a few times. The expectations so high here, too, Charlie. But they remember things like “Red Right 88” and “The Drive” and “The Fumble,” and they don’t want another memory of that kind.>>And the extra point. It’s blocked! Then picked up! It will be no good. Once you go with a kick, it is a conversion attempt. And it is no good. The margin remains at 4 points, not 3.>>And that was a huge turnaround. Scott Norwood has kicked here twice. In his field goals, he is 1 for 4. He just blew a kick that might be just as important as a field goal. Watch the surge in behind. A low kick, and Norwood was having trouble with this earlier in the day. He slides right out from underneath. The treacherous footing of Cleveland Stadium has got another one.>>The sandy infield strikes again. Going up for it was Chris Pike, but I’m really not sure it was high enough that it would have made it.>>Pike with a spike, and Norwood shaking his head.>>Let’s go back to the touchdown.>>Thurman Thomas right here, and watch him. He goes to the outside. There’s nobody home. The slot man is going to take it inside and get a chance to clear some people out. Watch it here. There’s no coverage. There is no coverage on Thurman Thomas. Somebody blew that one, Charlie. I wouldn’t want to go to the sideline having dropped my coverage and have to face Bud Carson on that situation.>>Mike Oliphant is now the deep back on the return team and not Eric Metcalf. And the ball falls off the tee.>>Charlie, all of the squabbling between Thomas and Kelly that we read about early in the year seemed to be forgotten on that. It seems to be well forgotten in this second half. More or less buried.>>Onsides kick. Has to go 10 yards. And then recov– There’s a flag down. Buffalo may have been offsides.>>It looked like one of the Buffalo — or several of the Buffalo players may have gotten over the line before the kick.>>The ball has to go 10 yards before it can be recovered by the kicking team, or has to be touched by the receiving team. But again, there’s a lone flag dropped at the 37-yard line. And Norwood, the kicker, has gone back and replaced the tee.>>The ball will not go 10 yards. And it…>>No, it does go 10 yards.>>Oh! Yeah.>>And then goes out of bounds.>>Two fouls on the kicking team. Offside, number 22, and a short free kick. The short free kick is a mandatory 5-yard penalty. We’ll re-kick from the 30-yard line.>>John Hagy was offside.>>The kicker is allowed to be offside.>>He’s the only one that is.>>He’s the only one that can be offside.>>Notice his foot came by — was past the line.>>Well, in particular, on that case, his whole body had jumped offside. But that ball was traveling far enough to be a legal kick. Of course, with the offside on Hagy, it would not have been recovered. Now, watch the kicker. He’s all the way over the line, which he’s allowed to do. Kicks that ball.>>And it was 22.>>Hagy was right next to him. That’s amazing that he would be offside.>>Yes.>>And almost recovered on the outside.>>You know what I think happened with Hagy? If we could take another quick look at it. He timed his body with the kicker’s body.>>Stayed with the kicker.>>He stayed with the kicker, and when the kicker was offside, which is okay, he was in no-no land. Hagy is pacing himself with the kicker. There’s the kick. Oh, yeah, oh. That’s a — Phew. Not in the purview of the replay official. Mm. Yeah, it went — You know, it covered the 10-plus yards and then went out of bounds.>>Now, let’s see. Will they go back to the same side, or will they kick it back to this side? Will they pooch it into the air?>>They did not recover the onsides kick anyway. An onsides kick that goes out is an automatic 5 yards, so… that would have taken precedence even if they would have been onsides. Well, do you come back with it again? Let’s see. 3:56 time remaining. You trail by 4, in a way, taking overtime — because of the missed extra point — out of the mix right now. And you need a touchdown to win.>>Norwood would certainly love to be able to kick a perfect onside kick after missing on that extra point. But I think they’re going deep.>>They do go deep. Oliphant on the return.>>Ball security. You don’t think somebody talked to him about wrapping that football up? He was more interested in protecting that football than anything else. Right now, the most important numbers in the park are on the clock.>>3:48. 3:48. Cleveland 34, Buffalo 30.>>I shouldn’t say they’re more important than the score, but certainly, to Buffalo, one eye on the clock and the other eye on Kosar. And let’s see what they’ve elected to do. They came back and mixed that — Early in this half, they came back using the passing game, mixing the run well. You’ve got to believe that Kosar will try to do that again here.>>Tim Manoa is the remaining back.>>Audible call from Kosar. They’re blitzing.>>And Manoa for a couple of yards. It’ll be second down.>>Defensively, at this point in the game, you’ve got to take some risks. You’ve got to gamble a little bit. Buffalo challenging at this moment, saying, “We’ve got to shut them down quick, three-and-out.>>Time-outs remaining — Buffalo has 2, Cleveland has 3. Cleveland 34, Buffalo 30. Buffalo led at the end of the first quarter, 7-3. Cleveland by 3 at the half, 17-14. And Cleveland by 10 at the end of the third, 31-21. Kosar is in trouble, and he is sacked. Second time that the Bills have gotten to him. And it was Darryl Talley.>>Talley calls time-out immediately. And Talley, the unsung hero, makes a big play here in the late moments.>>And we have another Cleveland injured player.>>Cody Risien is down on the turf. We talked about that bad knee that he has had throughout this season. He’s down. Cody Risien has played hurt all year with a bad knee, but it’s his ankle here that will give away. Watch right here, and let’s…>>Here it is.>>…stop it right there. Right there. As he steps back, he steps on Talley’s foot and bends that ankle up.>>Little swing, left side, Kevin Mack. And up the sideline, short of the first down. He got a lot of it back. It was third down and 17. But he didn’t get it all.>>So, very close. And important yardage, Charlie. Because those are yards that will be tacked on to the end of this punt. And right now, Bud Carson on the sideline saying, “Hey, 34 is going to be out there again, and we’re going to put some bodies on him this time.”>>A gain of 14. It is fourth down and 3. And Bryan Wagner will be kicking to Mickey Sutton.>>Do you go for the block here? A quick snap.>>Not a good kick.>>Charlie, I don’t think they were set.>>There’s a flag down.>>You’ve got to be set on the line of scrimmage. I don’t think that they were set on the line of scrimmage.>>37 yards total. A motion penalty against Cleveland.>>Do you force them to kick again, or do you just take the ball and go from here? Not a good kick.>>Illegal motion, left side of the line, offense. Declined. First down.>>You want the ball. You’re right, Merlin, I don’t think they were ready.>>Punt return team was still adjusting positions on that play. Here, let’s watch this play. They’re standing up. Jones, number 26, is still moving around. And of course, you got to be set for a full second, or they’ll throw that yellow flag.>>Buffalo wants the football. That’s no surprise. 2:41 left in the game.>>Buffalo wants a touchdown. And these fans want their defense to shut down Thurman Thomas.>>And Kelly has got to take them 74 yards for the score. Almost 10 yards on the opening play of this drive.>>Again haunted by the fact that they cannot get pressure on Kelly.>>Ronnie Harmon on the receiving end. Again, the hurry-up offense.>>45 sacks on the year, 1 today, and Kelly has had time to stand all day.>>Second and 1, Harmon again. Throwing underneath the coverage. 43-yard line, first down. And Cleveland has had its immense heart broken in this kind of a drive before, and now will take the 2-minute warning. Cleveland 34, Buffalo 30. Déjà vu, John Elway, 92 yards, left to right, this stadium. Known here as “The Drive.”>>Will it be the drive by Kelly? That was another quarterback by the name of Elway that made this stadium go into shocked silence. Of course, then Denver came back to win in overtime. But right now the Buffalo Bills are still a long ways away from that end zone, and that missed extra point means that they’ve got to get the touchdown. They have no opportunity on the field goal.>>Jim Kelly, 8 straight completions all to either Ronnie Harmon or Thurman Thomas.>>And you saw Bud Carson personally taking charge of this defense. It’s his defense, and he’s saying, “Hey, that’s not the way we’re going to play it. We’re going to shut them down.” [ Crowd cheering ]>>Going deep. Incomplete to Lofton. Lofton had good, tight coverage that he ran into, and he couldn’t get away from it. Thane Gash and Kyle Kramer were there for the Browns.>>It figured. They had hit them so short and so many times up front. They had to try deep. Kelly tried it, but there was no one there.>>Second and 10, 1:53 time remaining. The winner goes to the championship game. Steps away. Oh! Incomplete. Kyle Kramer, the rookie from Bowling Green, could not pull down the interception. It’s third down and 10 back at the 42-yard line. 1:46 left.>>Kramer getting playing time because of the injury to Tony Blaylock. And had an opportunity to be well remembered on this day.>>The Bills, successful underneath, now have gone long. Kelly’s in trouble. Steps away. Knocked down. [ Crowd cheering ]>>Robert Lyons. We saw him trailing desperately earlier on a play trying to catch up. Well, he caught up on that one, and just with his fingernails knocked that football away. A great job by Kelly of keeping the pressure off long enough. Watch him scramble away. Gets away from Pike once. He gets away from Pike a second time. And lofts that ball. It’s well-thrown, but that right there, just enough of the hand to block it away. And it’s going to be fourth and 10.>>Will Buffalo be second-guessed because they were successful staying underneath to the running backs? That was the success of their touchdown drive. They came away from it here, and they have been unsuccessful.>>But I mentioned to you, Charlie, when Bud Carson threw down that headset, I think what he did is said, “I’m taking charge of this defense.” And I think they were changing their coverages in this last drive. He still hasn’t put the headset back on. And that’s Jed Hughes, the defensive backfield coach, right there to the right of him with the brown hair. And he’s talking to Hughes again. I think he personally started to call those defenses.>>And I’ve got some good news, a report on Tony Blaylock. Feeling and movement in all four limbs, and they’re still doing some more x-rays. That’s the best news of all.>>Very good news.>>Fourth down and 10. The play. First down to Don Beebe. The drive continues. 1:25 and counting. Lyons with the tackle. No time-outs remaining.>>They’ve got to keep it alive. That means that they’re going to have to go to the sideline. And what’s going on? Have the officials stopped it here? No. The –>>Cleveland calls a time-out.>>The Browns have taken a time-out. The Browns perhaps want to make some substitutions. They have rolled defensive linemen in and out all day, but that doesn’t make sense, does it?>>Maybe making defensive changes, they didn’t have the right defensive set on the field. Get some fresh pass rushers in.>>Well, they’ve done that all day. John Teerlinck a big believer in keeping fresh legs on the field. Carl Hairston is going in. Michael Dean Perry coming off. Banks is in now. And big Chris Pike in the middle. A three-man rush, and again, the problem that they’ve had in this second half, besides their inability to cover the running backs out of the backfield, has been that they have not been able to get pressure on Jim Kelly.>>Kelly 25 of 44. He has thrown for 375 yards, 4 touchdowns, 1 interception. The ball at the Cleveland 41. 1:16 remaining. The margin is 4. Kelly’s in trouble. Gets away. Too high — incomplete. Harmon the intended receiver, and he was open, and it was about a foot too tall. Robert Lyons was again chasing him. Second and 10 at the 41.>>Back on the line quickly. Kelly showing you some good movement in that pocket, buying extra time.>>Thurman Thomas.>>He’s out of bounds to stop the clock.>>One minute. Harper was chasing him.>>Thomas — you see him right there, and breaking to the sideline. Again, lots of room. Matthews trailing from behind. Harper, number 23, bumps him out of bounds.>>And continuing a hurry-up — No, they stop the clock.>>Too many men on the field.>>Cleveland did not have a man off. Cleveland did not have a man clear. That’s the reason, perhaps, that Buffalo was hurrying –>>Or did they have –>>They called time-out right before. They knew that’s what they were doing. They were hurrying up, trying to cut down on their defensive changes with the hurry-up offense and no-huddle, going to the audibles.>>Bubba Baker had gone out to replace Robert Banks, and Banks was not quick enough coming off the field.>>Had to take the time-out.>>This is exactly what Buffalo wants — a chance to regroup, use somebody else’s time-out. Looking at the clock, 57 seconds. Carson knew he was caught on that play. He knows they’re going to get nailed, and he quickly says, “Use the time-out.”>>And he has one left. Shades of Sam Wyche. Well, the hurry-up offense, it can catch you.>>It certainly will keep the same people on the field. And of course, as long as you don’t make substitutions, you can snap that ball as quickly as you want to.>>Buffalo started this drive on their own 26 with 2:41 left to play, and now there are 57 seconds left.>>And as you approach the goal line, the field begins to shrink for the offense. It gets tougher and tougher to hit those open spots underneath. And now the referee, Dick Jorgensen, has come to the sideline. He is on the phone at the right end of the Cleveland bench. And they’re resetting — double-checking the time on the clock. They go back to 1:00. So you add the 3 seconds back.>>We talked early today about traditional football and the drama of traditional football. Well, it’s been more passing game than some of the traditional games we’ve seen, but the excitement, Charlie, is traditional. And this stadium rocking as it has for many great championship games and many great football games over the years. [ Crowd cheering ]>>Kelly’s in trouble, spins away.>>He gets away again. Not this time.>>Not this time. Now, they can call, but they’re not going to. They could call grounding the ball, but they don’t call it. I’m glad they don’t. Let’s not let the official decide this game. Let the players decide it. Michael Dean Perry finally got to him. How did they take Thurman Thomas out? Well, there’s — Ohh!>>Well, that’s one way to do it. That’s Minnifield, number 31.>>Did you get the number of that truck as it went by?>>A little low bridging.>>Whoo!>>They call him “Mighty Minnie.” Better be careful, Minnie, though. You don’t want to get too far up on that head. You get the yellow flag. Fourth down.>>Converting earlier on this drive on fourth and 10. This is fourth and 1. Over the middle — it’s there! Andre Reed has the first down.>>They’ve got to hurry now. The clock is running.>>Instead he’s going to spike it in the ground. Yes. Good play. That’s what the rule’s put in for. Give you a little chance to regroup, costs you a down.>>And in reworking their defense, the Browns have put Minnifield back into the regular mix. Art Modell. Well, yes, if your team was down to where it is right now and the score was what it is right now, with all on the line, you would be nervous. Second down, 10 yards to go. Three men up and eight men back. No.>>Incomplete. Beebe — it was low. It’ll be third down. No time-outs remaining. Two downs for sure. Do you go to the end zone now from out here? You got a little more depth to work with. He goes short, Thurman Thomas. Thomas still on his feet to the 11.>>He’s got the first down.>>He’s got the first down at the 11. They can spike again, of course.>>And number 34, Charlie, keeps coming up.>>Spike again, stop the clock. 14 seconds left, no time out. Thurman Thomas has been unbelievable.>>You almost want to say, “Where was Thurman in the first half?” He has owned this second half.>>Did he miss the bus?>>Certainly got a late start, but the second half of this ball game has been spectacular for Thurman Thomas and for Kelly, as well. Right now, Marv Levy just wants it to end that way. The Browns chanting for their defense. And another time-out for the Brown defense here.>>Thurman Thomas had a total of 36 yards in the first half. His total on the game is now 184 yards. 148 yards total offense second half for Thurman Thomas. A late bloomer?>>[ Laughs ] Well, there are some people who are glad that those numbers showed up for the second half.>>And Jim Kelly has thrown for more than 400 yards. 405 yards, 28 of 52, 4 touchdowns, 1 interception.>>Marchibroda talking to Kelly, and I’m sure Kelly going out to say, “Okay, Thurman. Just a couple more. Just a couple more.”>>What a game. What a game he is having.>>He only needs one. He needs someone in the end zone to catch it. Of course, for the Browns, all they’ve got to do, get their hands on that football or shut down the Bills in this last 14 seconds, and this one is all over.>>And remember now, it is second down and 10 because it was first down and he spiked to stop the clock. And 14 seconds left. So you’ve got 3 downs. You go to the end zone all three times. There’s one. Has a man open. Incomplete.>>Ronnie Harmon will make a difficult catch, and then he’ll drop an easy one. It’s been his history. He just dropped a game-winning touchdown.>>But it wasn’t all that easy a catch.>>Not an easy catch, but in this situation, a great player makes the big play. Harmon did not make it in that situation.>>Third down. Thurman Thomas is off on the right wing. It is intercepted at the 1! Clay Matthews! [ Crowd cheering ] [ Whistles blow ] It’s official. [ Crowd cheering ]

5 thoughts on “1989 AFC Divisional Playoff Game: Buffalo Bills vs. Cleveland Browns | NFL Full Game

  1. 19:19 Jim Kelly to Andre Reed for 72-yard TD

    31:33 Bahr 45-yard Field Goal

    43:46 Bernie Kosar 52-yard TD Pass

    49:25 Jim Kelly 33-yard TD Pass

    1:09:09 Kosar 3-yard TD Pass

    1:31:29 Kosar to Slaughter for 44-yard TD

    1:47:28 Kelly to Thurman Thomas for 6-yard TD Pass

    1:48:56 Eric Metcalf 90-yard Kick Return TD

    2:03:41 Scott Norwood 30-yard Field Goal

    2:14:29 Bahr 47-yard Field Goal

    2:24:44 Kelly to Thomas for 3-yard TD

    2:50:14 Kelly Intercepted by Matthews to end game

  2. This was such an under rated playoff game, and some how got lost in time. I guess bc neither team made the super bowl, but it's a shame, bc it's a classic. There are other great games people forget about, like the Jets and browns in 86. I love reliving these games from the 80's. Some truly compelling games that today's youth doesn't even know happened.

  3. hell even back then i had a soft spot for the browns. but they were a damn good team for a stretch in the mid/late 80's.

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