Browns still searching for answers and first win of season


ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Joe Haden is still searching for answers, knowing he and the Cleveland Browns have two chances left to avoid matching the NFL’s record for futility.

“Trying to figure out what we could have done better, what I could have done better,” Haden said. “We come in here every single week after a loss, and it’s just tough. It gets harder and harder, but it’s nobody that can change it but us.”

The veteran cornerback spoke Sunday after the Browns dropped to 0-14 following a 33-13 loss to the Buffalo Bills .

Cleveland matched the worst record to this point in a season, set by the 1976 Buccaneers and 1980 Saints and the 2008 Lions. Detroit is the NFL’s only team to go without a win in a 16-game season.

First-year coach Hue Jackson isn’t ruling out anything when it comes to helping the Browns find that elusive win and end an 0-17 streak dating to last season.

“Everything is going to be on the table,” said Jackson, adding that includes quarterback after Robert Griffin III was inconsistent in making his second straight start.

“We have nowhere to go up, but we have a lot of work to do,” he added. “This wasn’t my dream by any stretch of imagination. But I’m not running from this.”

Funny Jackson should mention “running,” because their defense was unable to stop the Bills from running all over them.

LeSean McCoy had a season-high 153 yards rushing and scored twice to break the game open on consecutive possessions spanning the third and fourth quarters.

The Bills (7-7) stayed mathematically in the playoff picture at a time when coach Rex Ryan and quarterback Tyrod Taylor’s futures are in question beyond this season.

PUCKS VS. PIGSKINS: Bills center Eric Wood, sidelined by a broken leg, backed both Ryan and Taylor in favoring continuity in a message to team owners Terry and Kim Pegula, who also own the NHL Buffalo Sabres.

“This isn’t like hockey where you scrap your franchise for a guy that you know is coming like an Eichel or McDavid,” Wood told The Associated Press, referring to Buffalo’s Jack Eichel and Edmonton’s Connor McDavid, the top two picks in the 2015 draft. “This is football. You can get a No. 1 draft pick, and the best guy on the board is a tackle that year, and a tackle doesn’t change your franchise.”

ON THE RUN: McCoy upped his season total to 1,129 yards rushing and has now scored 12 TDs rushing, the most since Willis McGahee had 13 in 2004. It also marked his sixth game topping 100 yards rushing this season.

Add in Mike Gillislee’s 3-yard touchdown run and the Bills have scored 27 on the ground to surpass the franchise record of 26 set in 1975 during the O.J. Simpson era.

Taylor had 49 yards rushing to up his season total to 520, and 48 short of matching the franchise record for quarterbacks he set last year.

SACK ATTACK IS BACK: After being held without a sack for two consecutive games, the Bills got to Griffin five times to match a single-season high.

That included defensive tackle Kyle Williams being credited with 1 1/2 to up his career total a week after sitting out because of a sore back.

“You don’t replace a guy like that,” Ryan said. “You notice when they’re gone and we certainly missed him last week.”

SCRAMBLER: Griffin scored on a nifty 18-yard run in which he was flushed from the pocket, outraced linebacker Jerry Hughes and had enough momentum to dive across the goal line after being hit by linebacker Preston Brown. After scoring on 1-yard run in a 23-10 loss to Cincinnati the previous week, he became Cleveland’s first quarterback to score TDs rushing in consecutive games since Charlie Frye had a three-game streak in 2006.

Griffin went 17 of 28 for 196 yards passing, and had a team-best 48 yards rushing.

STILL TRAILING: Down 3-0, the Browns had a chance to take a lead when facing first-and-goal at the 5 on their second drive. They instead went backward. Running back Isaiah Crowell lost 2 yards followed by Griffin being sacked twice.

Cody Parkey hit a 35-yard field goal to tie the game.

Cleveland has not held a lead in 17-plus quarters, dating to a 7-6 edge over Baltimore in the third quarter of a 28-7 loss on Nov. 10.

By John Wawrow

AP Sports Writer

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