Browns running back Peyton Hillis followed up his breakout game at Baltimore by rushing for 102 yards on 27 carries in the Browns' 23-20 victory over the Bengals Sunday.
He also scored a touchdown for the fourth consecutive week, becoming the first Brown to do that since Greg Pruitt scored in five straight weeks in 1975.
But the punishing Hillis may be doing one thing Pruitt never did -- leaving defenders injured in his wake.
Bengals starting cornerback Johnathan Joseph and strong safety Roy Williams learned first-hand the punishment Hillis dishes out.
Joseph injured his right forearm trying to tackle Hillis with 3:05 left in the first half. Then early in the second half, Hillis blew up Williams on an 8-yard run. Williams suffered a right knee injury, sidelining him for the rest of the day.
Browns rookie cornerback Joe Haden enjoyed the victory, and the two days off it brought.
''You can tell everybody's having a good time and happy to go see their families. We don't have practice on Monday, we're off Tuesday,'' Haden said. ''Coach told us to get used to this feeling. The coaches have relief and the players have relief because it was a good team that was 0-3 and now we finally got the first one.''
Browns coach Eric Mangini threw the red challenge flag after tight end Ben Watson's 16-yard catch in the end zone was ruled incomplete on Cleveland's second possession. But the call on the field was upheld as Watson didn't appear to have possession even before linebacker Keith Rivers got a hand on the ball.
Tight end Evan Moore recorded his first touchdown as a Brown, pulling in a 24-yard pass from Wallace with 11:04 left in the second quarter, and jumped in the end zone to celebrate. Watson followed Moore into the stands, drawing a 15-yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Wide receiver Chansi Stuckey had five catches for 56 yards, finishing second on the team in each category behind Watson (six catches for 60 yards).
But Stuckey also had a couple of miscues in the second quarter. He fumbled — it was recovered by Browns guard Floyd Womack — and Bengals cornerback Leon Hall intercepted a pass after the ball sailed through Stuckey's hands.
In the second quarter, Browns cornerback Eric Wright was beaten in coverage on a 42-yard pass from quarterback Carson Palmer to wide receiver Chad Ochocinco along the Bengals' sideline. Later during the drive on third down, Wright broke up a potential touchdown pass intended for Owens and the Bengals settled for a field goal.
"Guys give up plays," Wright said. "These guys get paid a lot of money to go out there and make plays for their team as well. You [need to] have a short-term memory and continue to fight and scrap."
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