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Sunday, December 29
Browns' Couch breaks right fibula

Associated Press

CLEVELAND -- Browns quarterback Tim Couch broke his right leg in the first half Sunday against the Falcons.

Couch was injured on the first play of the second quarter, and one play later, he was lifted for backup Kelly Holcomb.

Couch went to the locker room with 13 minutes left in the half for X-rays, and the Browns announced at halftime that the fourth-year QB had broken his right fibula.

The No. 1 overall draft pick in 1999, Couch has been a target for fan abuse in Cleveland all season because of his inconsistent play. Before getting hurt, he was 7-for-11 for 68 yards Sunday but threw an interception deep in Atlanta territory.

Holcomb started the Browns' first two games this season while Couch was recovering from an elbow injury. Holcomb then broke a leg and missed time.

Couch missed the final eight games of his rookie season with a broken right thumb.

Sunday's season finale was the most important game of Couch's career, and the QB had hoped win the support of Cleveland's fans by leading the Browns into the playoffs for the first time since 1994.

Couch put the Browns in position to earn a wild-card spot by rallying them to a 14-13 win at Baltimore last week. He guided them on a game-winning 92-yard drive in the final 2:18, hitting tight end Mark Campbell for a 1-yard TD with 29 seconds left.

Couch came into Sunday's game with 18 TD passes and 21 interceptions.

He completed a career-high 273 passes in 443 attempts for 2,842 yards.

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