Before the start of the season, plenty of prognosticators — including some who probably don't spend their off-hours snorting cleaning products — suggested that the Browns, led by heavily hyped egomaniac Baker Mayfield, were legitimate Super Bowl contenders. But after losing to Denver 24-19 on Sunday, November 3, Cleveland now has a 2-6 record, and talk of firing head coach Freddie Kitchens has moved to the front burner.
Meanwhile, Broncos boosters on Twitter are trying to figure out how they feel about Brandon Allen, who was elevated to the starting quarterback position after Joe Flacco ripped offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello following a last-minute loss to the Indianapolis Colts (the third such gut-tearing defeat of the campaign, after choke jobs to the Bears and Jaguars) before being placed on injured reserve with a herniated disc in his neck.
Few are proclaiming Allen the future of the franchise, which makes sense given the minor rises and precipitous falls of hurlers such as Brock Osweiler, Trevor Siemian, Paxton Lynch and Case Keenum, not to mention the former sixth-rounder's pedestrian numbers yesterday. Yes, he completed two touchdown passes, to tight end Noah Fant and wide receiver Courtland Sutton, respectively. But he only notched ten additional completions (out of twenty total heaves) for fewer than 200 yards — a real accomplishment, given that Fant's score went for 75 yards by itself.
Still, Allen displayed plenty of mobility, particularly in comparison with Flacco, who's about as shifty as Grant's Tomb, and at least he didn't make any huge mistakes. That and a decent performance by running back Phillip Lindsay, who got within eight yards of the century mark thanks largely to a forty-yard burst, were enough to top the Browns. Not that the fourth quarter was a laugher: Cleveland would have had a chance for yet another clock-defying victory but for a direct snap to Lindsay that resulted in a dagger of a first down.
Only a few of the Twitter-pated Broncos loyalists who weighed in afterward dared to suggest that the playoffs remain a real possibility. But loads of them had opinions in regard to what the outcome says about Allen, Flacco, team boss John Elway and plenty more. Count down our picks for the most memorable tweets about the game.