Bills down Browns, lose RB Spiller to injury
Cleveland, OH, United States (4E Sports) – Ryan Fitzpatrick threw three touchdowns passes as the Buffalo Bills clinched their second straight win with a 24-14 victory over the slumping Cleveland Browns Sunday at Browns Stadium.
The victory came at a steep price though as the Bills (2-1) lost running back CJ Spiller to shoulder injury near the end of the first quarter.
Considered as the Bills’ most potent offensive weapon, Spiller fell hard on his left shoulder after catching a 25-yard pass from Fitzpatrick and was carted off the field and did not return to the game.
Before the injury, Spiller already inflicted significant damage on Cleveland (0-3), scoring on a 32-yard reception for the Bills’ second touchdown of the game.
Fitzpatrick completed 22 of 35 passes for 208 yards and three scores, outplaying Browns rookie playmaker Brandon Weeden, who finished 27-for-43 for 243 yards and one touchdown but had two interceptions.
Spiller’s replacement Tashard Choice rushed 91 yards on 20 carries while Steve Johnson had 61 yards on seven receptions and a touchdown for the Bills.
Fitzpatrick hit five of his first six passes on the team’s opening drive, including a 17-yard heave to Donald Jones and an 18-yard hook-up with Stevie Johnson, before hitting T.J. Graham over the middle on a nine-yard touchdown pass for a 7-0 lead.
The Bills made it 14-0 after Fitzpatrick connected with Spiller for a 32-yard touchdown pass before the latter went down with a shoulder injury.
The Browns bounced back in the second quarter with a six-yard run by Trent Richardson but Rian Lindell buried a 37-yard field goal to open the third quarter for a 17-7 lead.
Weeden threw his only touchdown of the game with a 22-yard pass to Travis Benjamin to cut the deficit to 17-14 near the end of the third canto.
Fitzpatrick then led a 10-play, 68-yard drive that ended with a nine-yard touchdown pass to Stevie Johnson for a 24-14 cushion with eight minutes left in the game.
Leodis McKelvin and Bryan Scott sealed the Bills’ victory with interceptions in the final two Cleveland possessions.