BALTIMORE (92.3 The Fan) – Browns rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer was forced to leave midway through the second quarter due to a migraine before returning in the second half.
Kizer said after the game that he has a history of migraines but this was the first time that he could remember where he had a flare-up during a game.
“My migraines are hereditary,” Kizer said following the 24-10 loss to the Ravens. “They had nothing to do with what happened in the game. When I came back in the game in the second half, I was fine.”
Kizer said that the migraine problem dates back to his high school days but he was able to take medication to get it under control before returning to the field.
Head coach Hue Jackson noticed something was “off” with Kizer and had him checked by the medical staff to see if he was alright. As a precaution Kizer was also checked for a concussion and cleared by doctors.
“I wouldn’t have put him back in if he wasn’t normal,” Jackson said.
The migraine cleared early in the third quarter and he returned at the 8:19 mark with the Browns trailing 21-10. Cleveland started at their own 14 following a 63-yard punt from Ravens punter Sam Koch but the offense quickly went 3-and-out because of a sack of Kizer and a delay of game on the rookie from Notre Dame.
Kizer completed 6 of 11 passes for 81 yards with an interception before he departed. He was also strip-sacked by Ravens linebacker Terrelle Suggs in the first half that was eventually turned into a touchdown and 7-0 Ravens lead thanks to a 4-yard run by former Browns running back Terrance West 7 plays later.
Kizer finished the day 15 of 31 for 182 yards, 3 interceptions a fumble and 27.3 rating. He was sacked twice.
“I don’t feel like I was ever in a rhythm today,” Kizer said. “We tried hard to get things going, but Baltimore has a good defense that made it hard for us.”
Kevin Hogan relieved Kizer and led the Browns on a 5-play, 83-yard drive capped by a 23-yard touchdown to rookie tight end David Njoku to make it 14-7. The score was set up by a 49-yard catch and run by tight end Seth DeValve from Hogan.
“It was instant,” Jackson said. “I thought there were some things he did really well until he turned the ball over.”
Hogan made a critical mistake when he tried to fit a ball between 3 Ravens defenders while looking for Rashard Higgins. The turnover cost the Browns another touchdown 3 plays later when Joe Flacco found Jeremy Maclin for a 2-yard TD int he front of the endzone with 1 second left in the half for a 21-7 advantage.
“I tried to force it,” Hogan said. “It was a big mistake…It was just inexcusable at that position. I should have thrown the ball away or ran.”
Hogan, who filled in for 4 offensive series before Kizer came back, completed 5 of 11 passes for 118 yards with a touchdown and interception. He also led a field goal drive to pull the Browns within 21-10.