(CLEVELAND) — The Cleveland Browns have been riding high over the past couple of weeks with Brian Hoyer under center: They won two consecutive games entering Thursday night’s clash with the Buffalo Bills.
When Hoyer left the game with a knee injury in the first quarter, the Browns called upon a familiar face to rally them to victory.
Former starting quarterback Brandon Weeden came off the bench and led the Browns to a 37-24 victory over the Bills, their third straight win. Weeden hadn’t played since spraining his right thumb in Week 2, but he came up big for his team. He passed for 197 yards and a touchdown with no turnovers.
“Whether I was the starter, eyes are still on you to see how you respond, to see how you react,” Weeden said. “I was upbeat the entire time and never let it bother me. Inside, it just kind of lit a fire.”
The Bills (2-3) also lost their starting signal-caller. EJ Manuel left the game with a sprained knee and was replaced with fellow rookie Jeff Tuel.
Browns safety T.J. Ward intercepted Tuel and returned it 44-yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter to help seal the victory. Travis Benjamin electrified the crowd by taking a punt return 79-yards to the house before halftime.
With the win, the Browns temporarily moved into sole possession of first place in the AFC North.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Jill Martin, CNN
Eliott C. McLaughlin, CNN Newswire