The Green Bay Packers finally played their first game of 2016, and without most of their stars still had enough to beat the Cleveland Browns 17-11.
Cleveland starred off-season hire Robert Griffin III. His first pass was a 49-yard completion to Terrell Pryor. However, later in the drive he was intercepted by Micah Walsh, snuffing out a scoring opportunity.
The Browns have lost more games than they’ve won eight years in a row. They’ve finished last in the AFC North five years in a row.
They lost to the Green Bay Packers despite Green Bay not playing Aaron Rodgers or backup
Brett Hundley, who hurt his ankle in practice. Also not playing were receivers Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb, and starting linebackers Clay Matthews and Julius Peppers. Despite all that, the Packers scratched out a victory. Mason Crosby was in midseason form with a pair of 54-yard field goals.
Rather incredibly the game featured three safeties, with the Packers outscoring the Browns 3-2 in the first quarter. The Packers recorded two safeties in the fourth quarter to make a 13-11 lead into 17-11.
Joe Callahan, the Division III player of the year in 2015, played the entire first half. He competed 16 of 23 passes for 124 yards and a 2-yard touchdown.
The Browns’ quarterback Austin Davis suffered a concussion and left the game in the second half. On offense, rookie receiver Rannell Hall hurt his ankle in the third quarter after accruing two catches for 27 yards.
Eddie Lacy had a nice start to his 2016 season, rushing for 24 yards on four carries with a long of 11. As a team, the Packers rushed for 151 yards on 41 carries.
Undrafted Green Bay rookie punter Peter Mortell got the better of veteran Tim Masthay in this one, averaging 44 yards on three punts with a long of 62. Callahan did great work under center