Sometimes it pays not to score a touchdown. Nick Chubb and the Cleveland Browns got a very painful lesson in that on Sunday afternoon in a stunning 31-30 loss to the New York Jets.
With just under two minutes to play in regulation, Chubb scored his third touchdown of the game from 12 yards out to give the Browns a 30-17 lead. Normally a very good thing.
But at that point the Jets did not have a single timeout at their disposal, and if he had simply taken a knee short of the goal line the Browns could have run out the clock, never gave the football back to the Jets, and walked away with a second straight win to open the season.
Scoring the touchdown gave the Jets a sliver of hope.
They took advantage of it.
On the second play of the ensuing drive, Joe Flacco connected with Corey Davis for a 75-yard touchdown to bring the Jets to within a single score.
They followed that up by recovering the onside kick, then moving down the field on a 10-play drive that was capped off by rookie Garrett Wilson’s second touchdown catch of the game. That touchdown, combined with the extra point, gave the Jets their first lead of the day. They held on for the win following a Jacoby Brissett interception on the second play of the next Browns’ drive.
It all happened because Nick Chubb scored a touchdown.
Jets coach Robert Saleh was very thankful for it after the game, calling it the best missed tackle his team has ever had.