Alford's late pickoff saves Falcons' 23-20 win over Browns

Browns Falcons Football

ATLANTA (AP) — Dee Alford intercepted Jacoby Brissett's pass with less than a minute remaining and the Atlanta Falcons held on to beat the Cleveland Browns 23-20 on Sunday.

The Falcons (2-2) spoiled the Georgia homecoming of Cleveland's Nick Chubb, who ran for 118 yards and a touchdown with his high school team watching.

Younghoe Koo’s 45-yard field goal, his third of the game, with 2:28 remaining gave the Falcons the lead.

The Browns (2-2) moved past the 50 but on third and 23, Alford picked off Brissett's pass intended for David Bell.

The Falcons leaned on a balanced running attack led by rookie Tyer Algeier, who had 10 carries for 84 yards. Caleb Huntley and Cordarrelle Patterson each ran for touchdowns.

Chubb, with his Cedartown (Georgia) High School team watching from the stands, broke free around left end for a 28-yard touchdown run that gave Cleveland a 20-17 lead and pushed him over 100 yards. Chubb worked out with his high school team, about an hour from Atlanta, in the offseason.

Chubb began the day as the NFL's leading rusher.

Atlanta tied the game with Koo's 21-yard field goal.

Huntley had only one carry this season before he seized an opportunity in the second half. Huntley, who was on the practice squad before being elevated to the active roster on Saturday, had eight carries for 54 yards, including his 5-yard scoring run that gave the Falcons a 17-13 lead early in the fourth quarter.

Cleveland more than doubled Atlanta's total offense in the first half — 245 to 120 yards — but had to settle for a halftime tie.

The equalizer was a lost fumble by Browns tight end David Njoku. Falcons safety Jaylinn Hawkins forced the fumble, which was recovered by linebacker Rashaan Evans at the Cleveland 31.

Patterson's 11-yard scoring run three plays later gave the Falcons a 10-0 lead.

The Browns pulled even on Brissett's 5-yard scoring run and Cade York's 29-yard field goal.

One week after setting a career rushing high for the second time in three weeks with 141 yards against Seattle, Patterson ran for 38 yards on nine carries. He was limited by a sore knee in practice most of the week.

NEW STARTERS

Rookie Alex Wright and Isaac Rochell were fill-in starters at defensive end for Cleveland. Jadeveon Clowney missed his second consecutive game with an ankle injury. On Saturday, the Browns ruled out Myles Garrett as he recovers from injuries in a car wreck on Monday. Garrett hurt his shoulder, biceps, had several cuts and bruises, and broke a blood vessel in his left eye when he lost control of his car while speeding.

Browns defensive tackle Taven Bryan (hamstring) also did not play.

INJURIES

Browns backup running back Jerome Ford left the game with an ankle injury in the first quarter.

UP NEXT

Browns: Host the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday.

Falcons: At Tampa Bay on Sunday.

___

More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/hub/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL