· Cleveland’s defense forced five turnovers, including four interceptions. All 16 of the Browns points were scored off turnovers. The last time the team forced five or more turnovers in one game was at Jacksonville on November 21, 2010, when they totaled six. That game was also the last time the club had four interceptions in one contest.
· Linebacker D’Qwell Jackson recovered a fumble and also returned an interception 27 yards for a touchdown. It marked the first time the Browns returned an interception for a score since linebacker David Bowens returned two for touchdowns at New Orleans on October 24, 2010. That game was also the last time an NFL team had three interceptions by linebackers in a single-game.
· A pair of linebackers, each making their NFL debut, recorded interceptions. Rookie L.J. Fort and first-year player Craig Robertson each picked off Michael Vick. Since 1970, they are the only Browns linebackers to record an interception in their NFL debuts. In addition, Robertson co-led the team with eight tackles, while Fort added a sack. Fort became the first undrafted rookie to start at any position for the Browns on opening day in the Super Bowl era (since 1966).
· The Browns became just the third NFL team since 1970 to start a rookie quarterback, running back and wide receiver on opening day.
Team Year Players
Cleveland 2012 Brandon Weeden (QB), Trent Richardson (RB), Josh Gordon (WR)
Houston 2002 David Carr (QB), Jonathan Wells (RB), Jabar Gaffney (WR)
New Orleans 1971 Archie Manning (QB), Bob Gresham (RB), Bob Newland (WR)
· Kicker Phil Dawson became the fifth player in Browns history to appear in 200 or more regular season games. He joined Clay Matthews (232), Lou Groza (216), Doug Dieken (203) and Gene Hickerson (202) as the only Browns to reach that mark. Today, Dawson connected on all three of his field goal attempts (43, 42, 22) and one PAT. It marked the 34th time in his career that he has scored 10 or more points in a game.
BROWNS CAREER REGULAR SEASON GAMES PLAYED
Player Years Total
1. Clay Matthews 1978-93 232
2. Lou Groza 1950-59, 1961-67 216
3. Doug Dieken 1971-84 203
4. Gene Hickerson 1958-60, 1962-73) 202
5. Phil Dawson 1999-2011 200
6. Ozzie Newsome 1978-90 198
· Defensive back T.J. Ward co-led the team with eight tackles, while adding one sack and one forced fumble. The sack was the second of his career, while the forced fumble was his third.
· Wide receiver Travis Benjamin’s 35 yard rush in the second quarter was the third longest rush by a Browns receiver since 1999. His rush trailed only Joshua Cribbs’ 37 yard run against Pittsburgh on December 10, 2009 and Dennis Northcutt’s 36 yard touchdown run at New Orleans on November 24, 2002.
· The Browns had six rookies start today (Brandon Weeden-QB, Trent Richardson-RB, Josh Gordon-WR, Mitchell Schwartz-RT, Billy Winn-DT and L.J. Fort-LB). It is the most rookies the Browns have started on opening day in the Super Bowl era (since 1966). Prior to today, the most rookies to start on opening day for the Browns was four in 1969 and 2011.
· Brandon Weeden became the first rookie quarterback to start an NFL season opener for the Browns. He is the 17th quarterback to start for Cleveland since 1999 and 13th rookie quarterback in franchise history to start for the Browns.
· At 28 years, 331 days Weeden is the second-oldest rookie quarterback to start a game since the merger (1970) behind Carolina’s Chris Weinke who was 29 years, 159 days old when he started the 2001 season finale on January 6, 2002.
· The 15 rookies on the Browns active roster were the most that the team has had on opening day in the Super Bowl era. The previous high was 13 set in 1999. Prior to this year, the last NFL team to have 15 or more rookies on their active roster in season opener was Kansas City in 2008 (15). The Rams have 17 rookies on their roster this year.
· Left tackle Joe Thomas has started and played in each of the first 81 games of his career, while center Alex Mack has started and played in each of the first 49 games of his career. Neither one of the two have missed an offensive snap during their career.
· Defensive back Sheldon Brown has played in 161 consecutive regular season games, a figure which currently ranks sixth among all defensive players.
· Running back Brandon Jackson recorded two receptions for 20 yards. He has recorded at least one reception in each of his last 22 regular season games, a figure which entered this weekend’s games as the sixth-longest active streak among all NFL running backs.
· Defensive back Joe Haden recorded the seventh interception of his career and returned it 50 yards to set up a field goal. It was the second-longest interception return of his career, trailing only a 62-yard return at Pittsburgh on October 17, 2010. Today marked his first interception since he picked off Chad Henne in Miami on December 5, 2010.
· Joshua Cribbs returned three kickoffs for a 30.3 average and six punts for a 13.0 average. It marked the seventh time in his career that he averaged 30.0 or better kickoff return yards and 10.0 or better punt return yards in the same game.