Detroit Lions lose to Cleveland Browns, 13-10: Game thread replay

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Detroit Lions (0-8-1) vs. Cleveland Browns (5-5)

When: 1 p.m. Sunday.

Where: FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland.

TV/radio: Fox; WXYT-FM (97.1; other radio affiliates).

Line: Browns by 12½.

BOX SCORE

TURNAROUND: Browns rebuilt smartly from 0-16. Here are lessons Lions can learn

WINDSOR: Lions shouldn't lock in on a QB in the first round in 2022

Game notes: With all the ailments hobbling Browns starting quarterback Baker Mayfield, the Lions could have had their second straight game vs. a backup passer. But Mayfield will push through shoulder, knee and foot injuries to play Sunday. The Lions, however, will be without their own starting QB as Jared Goff has been unable to throw because of an oblique injury. That means former Green Bay Packers backup Tim Boyle gets his first career start.

INACTIVES: Tim Boyle to start, Jared Goff out for Lions vs. Browns

LIONS MAILBAG: How long before they're a legitimate contender in NFC North?

The return of two-time Pro Bowl running back Nick Chubb (COVID-19 protocols) to the Browns makes the Lions' task of collecting their first win much tougher. After a 3-1 start, the Browns have lost four of their past six. They were hammered last week by the New England Patriots, 45-7, as Mayfield started at QB, but was replaced by Case Keenum after taking a big hit in the third quarter.

The Lions played their closest game of the season last week, tying the Pittsburgh Steelers — who beat Chubb, Mayfield and the Browns, 15-10, just three weeks ago. The Browns feature a stronger run game than the Steelers, but are similar in having a sometimes stodgy pass game. (And it probably won't get better with the franchise's recent release of Odell Beckham Jr.) Cleveland actually averages fewer passing yards (209) than the Lions (211). Between the Lions starting Boyle, Mayfield's injury and Chubb's return, there could be 60 or 70 rushes by game's end, which is good news if you're a die-hard but have somewhere to be Sunday afternoon.

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Follow the Free Press on Facebook and Twitter for more news. Tyler Davis can be contacted at tjdavis@freepress.com or on Twitter @TDavisFreep.

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This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Detroit Lions lose to Cleveland Browns, 13-10: Game thread