Browns Film Review

The Cleveland Browns are 2-1. I will just let that sink in for a minute. I know it is tough to comprehend seeing as how it hasn’t happened since 2002 but it’s true.

After watching the film a few more times here are some things that jumped out at me.

Artis Hicks is playing very solid

The Dolphins have a pretty decent defensive line and pressure was not really a factor in the Browns’ offensive struggles. They did not give up a sack in the victory over Miami and Hicks (as well as a little bit of Oniel Cousins) held down their side of the line.

One thing that does worry me is that Colt McCoy seems to be developing what I like to call “Charlie Frye feet.” Instead of stepping up in the pocket when better pass rushers get around the edge, he runs out the side. That is a recipe for disaster. McCoy can make plays outside the pocket but this essentially cuts off half the field resulting in interceptions like the one early in the game. The pocket can’t always be perfect, sometimes you just have to have the courage to step up and stand in there.

The defense in underrated

Yes, I know they gave up 369 yards of total offense. Yes, I know they gave up 138 yards on the ground. Yes, I know the Dolphins shot themselves in the foot time and time again during this game. The reality is, however, that they have played very well when they absolutely needed it and have been outstanding in the red zone.

The Browns are 2nd in the NFL in sacks and are 7th in the league in allowing opponents to score only 37.5% of the time when they get in the red zone. “Bend but don’t break” is one of the most over used clichés in football but it is so true with the Browns.

The Browns have a legitimate two-headed monster

With Peyton Hillis down with strep throat, Monatrio Hardesty showed exactly why the Browns took a chance on the oft-injured back. Everyone knows his stats from Sunday (14 rushes for 67 yards and 19 more in the receiving category) but the most impressive part of his game was his burst and ability to make defenders miss. He is a threat to break a touchdown run anywhere on the field which is an element that Peyton Hillis lacks.

When both play together, and I expect that to happen next week, they will keep opposing defensive coordinators on their toes and second-guessing play calls. Head Coach Pat Shurmur still needs to show that he can legitimately set up the pass with that run game though.

Negatives: Colt McCoy’s bad day and force feeding Brian Robiskie

Colt McCoy’s number one attribute is his accuracy and the Browns cannot afford to have him forcing passes in bad spots and under throwing receivers. He needs to be smooth and consistent. To his credit, after a terrible 57 minutes, he led a spectacular 80-yard drive to win the game. Against a good football team, however, they would not have been in that position to come back. A win is a win, especially when the QB had a bad game, but McCoy has to have better control of the offense.

He also needs help from his receivers and NOT Brian Robiskie. At this point I don’t understand why he is even in any formations. He has shown zero ability to separate and has yet to catch a pass this season. I understand he is a good player in practice but its time to see what some of the other receivers (such as Carlton Mitchell) have to offer.

All in all, this was a huge win for a very young team. It is very tough to win in the NFL on Sundays. After playing sub-par football for most of day they rallied and got the job done. This could go a long way as far as confidence in concerned.

And did I mention no major injuries?! (Knock on wood)


1 Comment

  1. I see Will’s name listed in the categories but readers of this blog should have no confusion about who wrote the post. Where’s the by line?

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