The Cleveland Browns have had a decent start to their contest against the Tennessee Titans, jumping out to a 13-3 lead heading into halftime, but not everything has been great for the Browns so far. In particular, Deshaun Watson committed one of the most confusing plays in recent memory when he opted to willingly throw a pass backwards. We aren't talking about a lateral either; he literally threw the ball backwards.
While the Browns only have 13 points so far, Deshaun Watson has done a good job moving the ball through the air (16/20, 146 YDS, 1 TD). That wasn't true on one such play, though, where Watson endured pressure and was facing his own endzone. Rather than turn around and throw the ball, Watson opted to throw it backwards to Elijah Moore, who quickly hopped on the ball to avoid losing a fumble.
Deshaun Watson, this is not great.pic.twitter.com/rOlGZ0ZI8V
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) September 24, 2023
There’s no way this is real man 😭
— Thomas🌴 (@Tactic2_) September 24, 2023
One of the worst plays I’ve ever seen
— Troy King (@TKingMode) September 24, 2023
Are the Browns allergic to winning or something
— Elisha Surillo (@elishasurillo) September 24, 2023
— Portersburgh (@PortersBurgh) September 24, 2023
It's clear Deshaun Watson was hoping to get the ball to Moore here, but throwing the football backwards like this is never a good idea. The ball doesn't get to Moore, so it's a live fumble when it hits the ground, and Watson was very lucky that Moore was able to pounce on it here. If Moore didn't get the ball, this is probably going the other way for a touchdown for the Titans.
This resulted in a 2nd & 26 for the Browns, but they somehow managed to overcome this and score a touchdown on this drive, which has proven to be huge considering how their defense is stifling Tennessee. Watson clearly didn't let this mind-boggling play bother him, but it could have been disastrous for Cleveland, and he's very lucky that it wasn't.