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Freddie's last stand: Cleveland Browns fall Cincinnati Bengals 33-23, finish season 6-10

Despite sky-high expectations, Cleveland finishes with its 10th double-digit loss season since 2008.

CLEVELAND — 7:57 p.m. - Kitchens is out

The Browns have fired head coach Freddie Kitchens after only one season, ESPN reports.

4:00 p.m. - Browns end season on 3-game losing streak

The Browns fall to the 1-14 Bengals 33-23 after Baker Mayfield threw his third interception of the game. Cleveland finishes 2019 at 6-10, their 10th double-digit loss season since 2008.

Multiple reports have suggested Cleveland will fire head coach Freddie Kitchens soon. Time will only tell if that is the case.

REPORT: Browns have been 'making calls' to potential head coaching candidates

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3:55 p.m. - Bengals take two-possession lead

In what could be the final nail in the coffin, Randy Bullock kicked a 46-yard field goal to give Cincinnati a 33-23 lead with just 1:55 left. The Browns will need to score quickly and get an onside kick to have any hope of pulling it out.

3:39 p.m. - OBJ gets 4th TD of season

The Browns don't appear to be giving up yet, as on 4th and goal from the 20 Odell Beckham Jr. made a leaping catch for a touchdown to pull his team to within 30-23. Officials initially called it incomplete, but following an on-field conference and a video review upheld the score.

On the scoring driving, Beckham also went over 1,000 receiving yards for the season, the fifth time in his career he has accomplished that feat.

3:26 p.m. - Mixon scores again

And just like that, Joe Mixon takes it in from two yards out. The 23-year-old has rushed for 125 yards and two touchdowns, and the Browns now find themselves trailing 30-16 with just 14:16 left in the game.

3:22 p.m. - Bengals driving as 3rd quarter ends

Both Baker Mayfield and Andy Dalton traded interceptions in the third, but after a Cleveland punt, Cincinnati finds itself on an eight-play drive to the Browns 7-yard line. The possible back-breaker was a 28-yard catch-and-run by Jon Ross III, who got away from rookie Greedy Williams on his way to the red zone.

2:59 p.m. - Cincy extends lead

Randy Bullock made up for his missed extra point with a 47-yard field goal. The Bengals now lead 23-16 with about nine minutes left in the third quarter.

2:38 p.m. - Browns trail at halftime

The Bengals head into intermission clinging to a 20-16 lead. Baker Mayfield has completes only 40% of his passes, but two of them have gone for long touchdowns. Nick Chubb has averaged just 2.6 yards over eight carries, while Cincinnati's Joe Mixon is gashing Cleveland's front seven for 103 yards and a score.

2:25 p.m. - Browns pull to within four thanks to Jarvis Landry

The Bengals extended their lead to 20-7 in the second quarter, thanks to a five-yard QB keeper by Andy Dalton.

The Browns cut it to 20-10 on a 42-yard field goal by Austin Seibert, and on the very next drive, Baker Mayfield connected with Jarvis Landry for a 56-yard score.

Seibert's extra point, however, was no good, and Cleveland's deficit remained 20-16 with less than two minutes to play in the first half.

1:34 p.m./ET-Bengals take lead on Mixon touchdown run

The Cincinnati Bengals were quick to convert a takeaway into points late in the first quarter of the second edition of “The Battle of Ohio” in 2019.

After Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield was intercepted by cornerback Darius Phillips, the Bengals had a first-and-goal from the Cleveland three-yard line. Following an incompletion and a run for no gain, the Bengals went back to the run and Joe Mixon pushed the pile across the goal line for the touchdown.

Although kicker Randy Bullock missed the extra point, the Bengals took a 13-7 lead over the Browns with 4:45 to play in the first quarter at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati.

1:13 p.m./ET-Bengals respond with TD drive

The Cincinnati Bengals did not wait long to respond to the Cleveland Browns’ opening-drive touchdown in the second edition of “The Battle of Ohio” in 2019.

After the Browns took an early lead on a Baker Mayfield 46-yard touchdown pass, the Bengals marched 79 yards down the field in seven plays where quarterback Andy Dalton finished off the possession with a 15-yard scoring throw to C.J. Uzomah.

The Dalton-to-Uzomah connection, and ensuing successful extra point try, drew the Bengals even with the Browns at 7-7 with 9:53 to play in the first quarter of the AFC North Division battle at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati.

1:04 p.m./ET-Damion Ratley hauls in long TD

The Cleveland Browns came out firing against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, and it did not take them long to find the end zone in the 2019 regular season finale.

After two carries from running back Nick Chubb, which combined to go for a first down, the Browns went to the air and allowed second-year quarterback Baker Mayfield to test his deep ball skills against the Bengals’ secondary and it worked.

Mayfield found wide receiver Damion Ratley behind the coverage of a Bengals defensive back and the young pass catcher stretched to haul in the catch and maintained possession of the football throughout the end of the play for the 46-yard touchdown.

1:00 p.m./ET-Browns look to sweep Bengals in 2019

Not much to play for when the Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals meet in the 2019 regular-season finale at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati because both teams were eliminated from the postseason and the Bengals already having clinched the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft?

Don’t tell that to the Browns because they are not buying it.

“This is one of 16, and there is no quit in Cincinnati,” Browns coach Freddie Kitchens said. “We expect to get their best shot. The last game [against Cincinnati] means nothing. Last week means nothing to either one of us. What they did now, they should feel very good about, and I am sure they do about what they did.

“They were down, 35-12, with six minutes to go on the clock, and then, down 16 with three minutes to go on the clock, so that was remarkable. That was one for the history books just to get it to overtime. They did a remarkable job.”

Credit: Ross D. Franklin/AP
Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) throws against the Arizona Cardinals during the second half at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona on Sunday, December 15, 2019.

The 2019 season finished the same way the previous 17 have, with no trip to the postseason to follow Week 17, but the Browns know well that positives taken from today’s game could spark further change in 2020.

When Mayfield went through the NFL Scouting Combine in 2018, he stated that if there was one player who could turn around the fortunes of a Browns team coming off of an 0-16 season in 2017 that it would be him.

Mayfield got his opportunity when the Browns took him with the No. 1 overall pick, and although there have been successes along the way, neither the quarterback nor the team are where they want to be heading into today’s game.

“For us, we are trying to get as far away from what it has been at this place as quickly as we can,” Mayfield said. “Seven wins is not good enough for us, and that is why people are frustrated around here, within this locker room. We understand that. It is not about the past. It is about right now and what can we do to get better for the future.”

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