Browns frustrate Vick, upset FalconsNov 12, 2006 - 9:48 PM ATLANTA (Ticker) -- Romeo Crennel's defense made Michael Vick look human.
The Cleveland Browns physically pounded Vick en route to a surprising 17-13 victory over the Atlanta Falcons in an interconference game.
The defensive coordinator for all three of the New England Patriots' Super Bowl-winning teams, Crennel employs a 3-4 scheme in his second season as Browns coach.
Crennel's defense frustrated and pounded Vick at every turn Sunday.
"The goal was to make Vick one dimensional," Browns linebacker Andra Davis said.
Vick, the NFL's most electrifying quarterback, completed just 16-of-40 passes for 197 yards and one touchdown with two interceptions while also losing a fumble. He also rushed for 74 yards on seven attempts.
"I take sole responsibility on the offensive side," Vick said, shaking his head. "It hurts."
"He is one of the greatest atheletes in the NFL," Browns cornerback Ralph Brown said. "We didn't want him to beat us with his feet, so we made him try to beat us with the passing game."
In the second quarter, Vick also briefly left the game after taking a hard shot. Charlie Frye went an efficient 16-of-22 for 165 yards and a touchdown for the Browns (3-6).
Cleveland also contained Warrick Dunn, holding him to 73 rushing yards on 21 attempts.
"Everybody is talking about Vick, but Warrick Dunn is a Pro Bowl running back," Davis said. "We had to shut him down first and then stop Vick from getting away. So hey, we focused on Warrick Dunn the whole week of practice."
The Falcons (5-4) suffered their second straight disappointing loss. They were coming off a 30-14 setback at Detroit.
"This is a humbling league," Falcons coach Jim Mora Jr. said. "Two weeks ago we were flying high, we had two good wins and now we suffered two tough losses. What we have to do as a football team is stick together, keep fighting, keep working hard."
To punctuate their defensive performance, the Browns came up with a turnover to seal the game when Vick fumbled and cornerback Jereme Perry pounced on the ball at his own 27.
"The picket defense is their defense," Vick said. "It is how they guard the end zone. Their only hope was for us not to score a touchdown. When we ran the quarterback draw those guys practically knew what we were running. They were calling out the play before the snap. I just tried to make a play. The guy sat in the A gap and I tried to bounce it outside and I lost the ball."
The Browns also started well, scoring a touchdown in the first quarter for the first time in their last 12 games. Reuben Droughns capped the five-play, 46-yard drive with a one-yard TD run.
Charlie Frye found Braylon Edwards over the middle for a 19-yard touchdown with 11:59 left in the first half, giving the Browns a 14-0 advantage.
"We were hitting on all cylinders," Frye said. "The thing that we did this week was that I met twice with the linemen and the skill guys after practice and I think it really paid off early in the game."
"Charlie and I watched film on that all week," Edwards said. "He and I watched it on film maybe three days in a row. We said, `Hey, it's going to be there. There's potential for this play.' It was there, and Charlie just knew it."
Morten Andersen's 44-yard field goal with three seconds left in the half pulled the Falcons within 14-3.
Allen Rossum's 37-yard punt return to the Cleveland 12 set up Vick's 12-yard touchdown pass to Michael Jenkins with 66 seconds left in the third quarter.
Andersen kicked a 41-yard field goal with 8:52 remaining to pull the Falcons within 14-13.
But the Browns answered with an eight-play, 52-yard drive, which resulted in Phil Dawson's 43-yard field goal with 5:35 left. Frye kept alive the drive with a six-yard completion to tight end Steve Heiden on 3rd-and-3.
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