Cleveland, OH (WBEN) The Buffalo Bills traveled to Cleveland Sunday and broke their eight-game losing streak on the road but they paid a high price for it. The Bills jumped out to an early lead, lost running back, C.J. Spiller to a shoulder injury but managed to hold on and beat the Browns 24-14.
The Bills opened the scoring with a nine-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick to rookie, T.J. Graham. Spiller made it 14-0 when he took a screen pass 32-yards and it looked like the Buffalo would roll to a 2-1 record but after Spiller left the game, his absence had a visible impact on the offense the rest of the way, managing only a 36-yard field goal by Rian Lindell until Stevie Johnson caught a nine-yard, scoring pass from Fitzpatrick mid-way through the fourth quarter.
The Browns were able to battle back and make the score 17-14 after scores by rookies, Trent Richardson and Travis Benjamin but the Buffalo defense clamped down with a few key stops and also pressured rookie quarterback, Brandon Weeden. The Bills got four sacks in the game, including the first by defensive end, Mario Williams.
Spiller, who entered the game as the league’s top rusher, was lost for the game and possibly longer after he was tackled on a shuffle pass early in the first half. Spiller was carted off the field. Buffalo has already lost fellow running back, Fred Jackson, in week one’s loss to the New York Jets. Jackson is hopeful to return from the knee injury soon but until then, Tashard Choice may be the starter for next week’s game against the New England Patriots.