Final

Browns 35

(2-0, 2-0 away)

Packers 10

(0-2, 0-1 home)

8:00 PM ET, August 16, 2012

Lambeau Field, Green Bay, WI 

1 2 3 4 T
CLE 6 10 14 535
GB 7 0 0 310

Brandon Weeden solid in 1st half as Browns top Packers

Associated Press

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Eliminating major mistakes was the top priority for Cleveland Browns rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden.

The big plays, presumably, will come in time.

Weeden showed improvement in his second preseason game, avoiding some of the trouble he found last week, as the Cleveland Browns beat the Green Bay Packers 35-10 at Lambeau Field on Thursday night.

Weeden said he's making progress.

"I think so," Weeden said. "You've got to keep in mind last week was my first-ever start in the NFL, and it's just like a true freshman going into college and it's an even bigger jump coming up here. I didn't get down on myself about the way things went last week, and I just want to go out and get better, and I did that."

Aaron Rodgers looked sharp in limited action, but backup quarterback Graham Harrell was shaky for the Packers.

Packers coach Mike McCarthy wasn't thrilled with an 0-2 start in the preseason -- especially as he watched his team turn over the ball.

"It's something that needs to stop," McCarthy said. "There's no excuse for that."

Weeden, a first-round pick out of Oklahoma State who already has been chosen the Browns' starter, played the first half and was 12-of-20 for 118 yards.

Browns coach Pat Shurmur said the Packers' defensive pressure was a good test for Weeden after he faced mostly a four-man rush against Detroit.

"Today we played against a lot of pressure. So those are two different feels of the way the game goes, and I think Brandon got a chance to go through that," he said.

Browns kicker Phil Dawson hit three field goals, including a pair from 50-plus yards. Dawson missed a 56-yarder just before halftime for Cleveland.

Rodgers threw a 20-yard touchdown to Jordy Nelson on his first series for the Packers.

The reigning NFL MVP stayed in for two more series, completing six of 11 passes for 59 yards. He also had a 21-yard scramble and took a hard hit on another rushing attempt.

Rodgers said he was happy with the protection he got from the offensive line, which welcomed back left tackle Marshall Newhouse this week after an extended absence because of a concussion.

But with the Packers short-handed at running back, Rodgers didn't like seeing himself and Harrell as the team's leading rushers.

"We need to run the ball a little bit better," Rodgers said.

Harrell took over early in the second quarter and struggled, completing 12 of 24 passes for 100 yards with two interceptions. Harrell, the Packers' No. 3 quarterback last year, is trying to prove he can become Rodgers' primary backup after Matt Flynn signed with Seattle in the offseason.

"We've got a lot of confidence in Graham," Rodgers said. "We're not worried about him."

He threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown by safety David Sims in the third quarter, although a receiver fell down on the play as Harrell threw the ball under pressure. With Sims' touchdown, the Browns led 23-7. Harrell's other interception was on a desperation attempt at the end of the first half, and Rodgers referred to both interceptions as "hard luck."

"For one reason or another, just couldn't finish drives," Harrell said. "It's unfortunate. We've got to be more consistent and finish drives when we have the opportunities to. I think that's kind of how it went."

Former Packers running back Brandon Jackson added a 1-yard touchdown in the third period, putting the Browns up 30-7.

Harrell then was called for intentional grounding in the end zone early in the fourth quarter, a safety that put the Browns up 32-7.

The Packers have been beset by injuries early in the preseason. Already having potentially lost inside linebacker Desmond Bishop for the season because of a hamstring injury, they ruled 18 players out for Thursday's game. That included Greg Jennings, still recovering from a concussion sustained in an Aug. 3 scrimmage.

The Packers' new-look defense got off to a strong start when Charles Woodson stripped the ball from running back Montario Hardesty on the first play from scrimmage. Casey Hayward recovered to give the ball back to the Packers on the Cleveland 23-yard line. As expected, Woodson saw time at safety, moving to cover the slot receiver on passing downs.

Rodgers overthrew Nelson on the Packers' first play. But he found Nelson on a similar route two plays later, as Nelson leaped over cornerback Joe Haden and hauled down the ball.

Game notes


Late in the second quarter, Weeden took a big shot from cornerback Brandian Ross, who came in unblocked on a blitz. Weeden got up slowly but stayed in. ... Cedric Benson didn't play after joining the Packers earlier in the week. ... McCarthy was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct when he threw a replay challenge flag after a turnover. McCarthy said the call was correct but seemed to be hoping for better communication with the replacement referee crew.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
CLE
GB
1st Downs1910
Passing 1st downs
126
Rushing 1st downs
74
1st downs from Penalties
00
3rd down efficiency
10-186-13
4th down efficiency
1-10-1
Total Plays7054
Total Yards337228
Yards per play4.84.2
Total Drives1213
Passing220159
Comp - Att
19-3018-36
Yards per pass
7.34.4
Interceptions thrown
03
Sacks - Yards Lost
0-00-0
Rushing11769
Rushing Attempts
4018
Yards per rush
2.93.8
Red Zone (Made-Att)2-40-0
Penalties8-678-61
Turnovers14
Fumbles lost
11
Interceptions thrown
03
Defensive / Special Teams TDs10
Possession36:0123:59

Passing Leaders

CLEC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Weeden12/201185.9000-0
McCoy4/6589.7000-0
GBC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Harrell12/241004.2020-0
Rodgers6/11595.4100-0

Rushing Leaders

CLECARYDSAVGTDLG
Hardesty12453.819
Thomas12383.206
GBCARYDSAVGTDLG
Rodgers22412.0021
Harrell3237.7011

Receiving Leaders

CLERECYDSAVGTDLGTGTS
Little44511.30245
Gordon23819.00195
GBRECYDSAVGTDLGTGTS
Boykin56312.60256
Williams3237.7095

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERCLEGB
gbTD13:57Jordy Nelson 20 Yd Pass From Aaron Rodgers (Mason Crosby Kick) 07
cleFG08:43Phil Dawson 53 Yd 37
cleFG04:47Phil Dawson 47 Yd 67
SECOND QUARTERCLEGB
cleTD14:55Montario Hardesty 1 Yd Run (Phil Dawson Kick) 137
cleFG01:19Phil Dawson 52 Yd 167
THIRD QUARTERCLEGB
cleTD12:20David Sims 38 Yd Interception Return (Jeff Wolfert Kick) 237
cleTD01:15Brandon Jackson 1 Yd Run (Jeff Wolfert Kick) 307
FOURTH QUARTERCLEGB
cleSF14:55PENALTY ON Graham Harrell IN END ZONE 327
gbFG08:57Mason Crosby 42 Yd 3210
cleFG00:59Jeff Wolfert 34 Yd 3510