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Pregame Brawl Breaks Out Between NFL Teams

This Twitter screen shot shows a scuffle breaking out between the San Francisco 49ers and Cleveland Browns on Sunday.
@NFLonFOX / X Screen Shot

The following article, Pregame Brawl Breaks Out Between NFL Teams, was first published on Flag And Cross.

One of the most exciting and competitive games from Sunday’s early slate of NFL games featured nearly as much drama prior to the game as during it.

The historically moribund Cleveland Browns beat the previously-undefeated San Francisco 49ers 19-17 in a rainy game Sunday afternoon — but not before some extracurricular activity before the game.

You can watch the scuffle yourself below:

In the viral clip, you can clearly make out a number of Niners stars, like receivers Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk, as well as veteran lineman Trent Williams, get into some pregame shoving with swathes of Browns players.

Before testosterone levels reached critical mass, a number of team officials and referees intervened, ensuring the small brawl would stay just that and not devolve into a battle royale.

Ironically enough, the brawling clip led Fox NFL analyst and legendary Hall of Fame football coach Jimmy Johnson to exclaim that the Browns had made a mistake in antagonizing the Niners.

“This is the worst thing that can happen for Cleveland,” Johnson exclaimed. “Don’t poke the bear!”

Indeed, going into this game, this looked like it would be a relatively easy win for a dominant and undefeated 49ers squad facing a middling Browns team that was missing its starting (and controversial) quarterback.

Due to a lingering injury to quarterback Deshaun Watson’s throwing shoulder, in a torrential downpour, journeyman backup quarterback PJ Walker got the nod to start.

On paper, it should have been an easy win for the Niners.

But football is not played on paper, and the game devolved into a rainy, wet slog of a contest — perfect circumstances just ripe for an upset.

It is also worth noting that the Niners lost a number of key contributors to injury during the course of the game, including Samuel and star running back Christian McCaffrey and were missing standout linebacker Dre Greenlaw for the entire game.

And yet, the Niners appeared well on their way to securing that win early in the second quarter of the game, when the team captured a quick 10-0 lead.

Cleveland would eventually tie and take the lead in the third quarter of the game as standout Niners quarterback Brock Purdy struggled mightily facing the Browns pass rush and the weather.

That critical third quarter saw Purdy not only throw his first interception of the entire season, but a rather ignominious moment where Purdy seemed to get the football stripped from him by the air, which is the kind of moment that could very well become a meme should he continue to struggle:

Despite Purdy’s struggles and the inclement weather, the Niners were able to lead 17-13 after a fourth quarter rushing touchdown.

That lead eventually dissipated as the Browns knocked down a pair of field goals in the fourth quarter, taking a 19-17 lead.

Even then, the Niners had a chance to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat when kicker Jake Moody had a 42-yard field goal attempt with the clock on the verge of expiring.

Moody would ultimately miss — his second miss in three tries today — and the Browns would cling to a much needed win.

The Browns will travel to face the Indianapolis Colts — another team grappling with an injury to its starting quarterback — next Sunday.

The Niners, meanwhile, will have to wait an extra day to wash the bad taste of this loss out of their mouths when they travel to face the Minnesota Vikings in an Oct. 23 “Monday Night Football” tilt.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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