Lions Beat Browns By 3

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Brady Quinn's pro debut was nearly picture perfect.
With flashbulbs popping all around the stadium, Quinn threw two fourth-quarter touchdown passes in his first NFL exhibition game and looked better than any Cleveland quarterback in the Browns' 23-20 loss to the Detroit Lions on Saturday night.
The former Notre Dame star, who isn't expected to begin the season as Cleveland's starter but could become a late addition to the club's ongoing competition between Charlie Frye and Derek Anderson, entered with the Browns down 23-7.
As No. 10 jogged onto the field with 9:20 remaining, Cleveland fans welcomed Quinn with a roaring ovation, and many of them stayed on their feet after Quinn hit Chris Barclay on a screen pass that went for 30 yards on his first play.
Quinn completed five passes in a row before his first miss. On second-and-3 at Detroit's 4, he calmly rolled to his right and drilled a TD pass to rookie Efrem Hill, who got open near the sideline.
The next time Cleveland got the ball, Quinn drove the Browns 92 yards in 1:52, hitting Jerome Harrison with a 6-yard TD pass with 18 seconds left.
Quinn, who missed 11 days of training camp before signing a five-year, $20.2 million contract, didn't play in last week's win over Kansas City. Coach Romeo Crennel has insisted Quinn is behind in learning Cleveland's new offense, but with the way Frye and Anderson are playing, he may be able to catch up quickly.
Quinn finished 13-of-20 -- with three spikes to stop the clock -- for 155 yards.
While the Browns have quarterback issues to resolve before their season opener, the Lions appear to be set.
Playing the entire first half, Jon Kitna finished 12-of-16 for 137 yards and hit Shaun McDonald with a 14-yard scoring pass just before halftime for the Lions (2-0), who seem to be making strides in coach Rod Marinelli's second season.
The same can't be said of the Browns (1-1). They were booed off the field at halftime by their passionate fans, who are quickly losing patience and began chanting Quinn's name late in the third.
Backup kicker Kenny Byrd booted three field goals and T.J. Duckett had a 15-yard TD run in the third quarter for Detroit, which built a 23-0 lead.
Jason Wright scored on a 1-yard run in the fourth for Cleveland's first offensive TD of the preseason.
Kitna never looked in rookie wide receiver Calvin Johnson's direction, and the No. 2 overall pick did not have a reception. Detroit was without starting wideouts Roy Williams (hamstring) and Mike Furrey (knee), defensive ends Dewayne White (groin) and Kalimba Edwards (ankle) and kicker Jason Hanson (hamstring).
The Lions sustained a few more injuries, the most prominent to guard Damien Woody (ankle) and defensive tackle Cory Redding (elbow). Both went down in the first half and did not return.
The battle between Frye and Anderson has produced mostly confusion for Crennel, who was hoping to have his starter for the Sept. 9 opener against Pittsburgh named by this point of the preseason.
He doesn't have much to choose from.
For the second straight week, Frye (5-for-10, 42 yards) had a mental error and threw an interception. Anderson (6-for-8, 65 yards) had two turnovers, including an interception near the goal line following a comedy of errors by Cleveland's offense.
Hanson didn't dress for the game so he could rest a sore hamstring. But the 16-year veteran had to rush into the locker room and get in his uniform after Byrd injured himself on a kickoff in the second.
Detroit's training staff was re-taping Byrd's ankle when Hanson jogged onto the field and began loosening up. Byrd, though, stayed in.


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