Browns found in an early hole, in a loss to 49ers

The Browns found themselves in an early hole Monday, and it only got deeper and deeper as the night unfolded.

Matt Breida’s 83-yard touchdown run on the 49ers’ first offensive play set the tone on a night that went from bad to worse for the Browns. San Francisco rushed for 275 yards and Cleveland turned it over four times in the 31-3 loss at Levi’s Stadium.

The loss drops the Browns to 2-3 while the 49ers remained the lone undefeated team in the NFC at 4-0.

Baker Mayfield and the Browns offense never found the rhythm they had in last week’s big win over Baltimore. The second-year quarterback finished 8-of-22 for 100 yards and two interceptions. Cleveland gained just 180 yards after racking up a 530 against the Ravens.

The 49ers, meanwhile, kept running and running and picking up first downs. Breida led the way with 114 yards and Tevin Coleman was right behind him with 97 for a rushing attack that averaged 6.9 per attempt. That made life easy for Jimmy Garoppolo, who completed 20-of-29 passes for 181 yards and two touchdowns.

Jarvis Landry caught his 500th career reception on the first play of the game and finished with 75 yards on four catches. Nick Chubb rushed for 87 yards on 16 carries.

The Browns — who got off to a promising start that quickly fizzled following a trick-play, Odell Beckham Jr. 20-yard pass to Landry — surrendered the 83-yard touchdown to Breida on the 49ers’ first offensive play and turned it over three times in the first 30 minutes. The 49ers didn’t do anything with the first two turnovers — a Mayfield interception and a Mayfield fumble — but capitalized on the third to close out a 21-3 half. That third one — a back-breaking interception on the goal line with less than 5 minutes to play in the second quarter — was the most deflating moment of the night for the Browns, who were poised to cut the 49ers’ early deficit to a single possession.

Trailing 14-3 and moving the ball as well as they had all night, the Browns came away with nothing when Mayfield’s third-and-goal pass to Antonio Callaway was bobbled and deflected into the arms of cornerback K’Waun Williams. The 49ers quickly turned the turnover into a touchdown, capping the scoring drive with a 19-yard Coleman touchdown.

The 49ers rushed for 185 yards in the first half — 12 more than the then-league leading Ravens amassed for the entire game against the Browns the previous week.

Cleveland’s lone points of the first half came on a short field goal by Austin Seibert, who moved to 8-for-8 on the season.

San Francisco expanded its lead to 25 when Garoppolo connected with George Kittle on a 22-yard touchdown pass early in the third quarter.

The Browns are back in action Sunday at FirstEnergy Stadium when they host the Seattle Seahawks.

Source: Cleveland Browns