2013 Cleveland Browns the Definition of Mediocrity

Browns huddle

Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

After six games, the Cleveland Browns are in second place and playing .500 football. For those of you who had preseason expectations of 8-8, you’re right on pace. Does it feel as good as it sounded in preseason? No. Why? Because once the games start being played, no one wants to sit there and watch mediocre football, even if it does show improvement. There’s no real victory in that: “We suck, but not as bad as we used to suck.” But do the Browns suck?

Don’t say Brandon Weeden by name. We’ll leave the individuals alone for a day and just focus on the team. We don’t need to point out their roster deficiencies; the roster is what the roster will be for the remainder of the season, barring a major injury. Let’s look at what they’ve got. Let’s see what they’ve done. Let’s see if they do suck.

The Browns’ strength is their defense. It’s not perfect, as we saw Sunday when the Detroit Lions picked them apart in the second half. But they’re still a good squad and it’s hard to say the offense’s terrible performance didn’t aid that defensive collapse. Before the Browns lost any hope for the season because of a cleat – one single lousy cleat – the defense showed that it could go the distance when the offense was doing something unfamiliar to last week’s squad, namely making scoring drives and first downs.

Run defense is typically strong. They’ve improved the coverage by sending every defensive player not named Joe Haden after the remaining receivers. This is great for coverage but hurts two other areas of the team: The pass rush and short pass coverage. So how does this team overcome this in a passing league? You hope your team has its own passing game and can keep up. There’s just one problem (I told you not to say his name!). Cleveland doesn’t have much of one.

The Browns can’t run, but not many can these days. Still they need a little more than they’ve done, though the team is showing some improvement in that area. No, you know where I’m going with this. It’s all about the passing game. The Browns seem to have a good first half passing game. Okay, maybe not good, but at least decent. Then comes halftime and not so much. Regardless of who the quarterback is, the Browns seem to have problems moving the ball in the third quarter and for much of the fourth. One can be lazy and just assume that teams are making adjustments and the Browns need time to counter them, but I don’t know if I believe that.

Look, if you wanted to make that accusation when Pat Shurmur was the head coach, how could anyone not listen to it? But he’s with the Philadelphia Eagles. I have to think that Norv Turner hasn’t forgotten how to counter adjustments after 624 years in the NFL. To me it’s about the personnel. Yes, football is a chess match, but sometimes you have to impose your will on the other team. Anyone think Peyton Manning has an issue with second half adjustments? No, he takes the snap, scans the field, and finds an open receiver. The Browns don’t have those guys, so the second-half struggles will probably continue all year.

And what about the rest of the year? I’m not looking at the schedule but just talking in a general sense. The Browns will drop some they should win, win some they should drop, so what’s the point of saying “they’ll beat Team A and then lose to Team B”? The Browns have 10 games remaining. How many of those should they be able to take? Four? That means that the team finishes with a 7-9 record, which would suck, but not as bad as they used to suck. That, my friends, is all you’ll be getting for the 2013 season.

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  • Big D

    I agree, my Browns are just not talented enough on offense or defense, but yes they are a little better at least sometimes. So when the other team is not hurting our defense, by passing well against the Browns defense or running the ball well, and if the Browns offense comes out hot as it sometimes does !5% of the time ( usually your shocked if they do come out smoking) The Browns usually jump out to an early 3 or 7 point lead (IF we are luck to get TDS instead of FG`s) So thus you have a team that does not keep up when the other teams makes adjustments, or our defense tires or blows assignments, gets sped pass by better, faster talent or a mismatch, say Reggie Bush on our #53 linebacker Roberson? We don’t use the personell we do have properly, ie, take out a few LBS when they are getting there butts sped past on routes by rbs, tes and cover them with defensive backs who are faster, if the other team notices this change back to LBS if they look like they are gonna try to get to are smaller dbs , but do it quickly or mix it up by taking on LB out and one extra db. The Browns running game is darn near unexsistant. 3 or 4 yd runs by MacGhaee or Obie #25 as your best run of the day will not cut it. With Weed at qb playing scared, playing unwise, throwing behind or way above our often open recievers is causing major problems scoring, and putting extra downs for a good but not top 10 defense in terms of sacks, getting the other teams azz off the field on 3rd down or before ( with early down turnovers) so all of this leads to those frustrating losses like the Detroit game, and the first 3 losses of the season. Chuds coaching is not all that great either on the field calls, chocies and his lack of knowing how to use personnel in the proper or extenuating circumstances makes the situation worst, as a very good coach usually gets more out of less talent, because he is wise with disguising or adjusting things or doing something a little unorthodox or freaky that the other team is shocked by or under estimated what that coach did with his guys. See Bellichik for example or Sean Peyton in Nola, even sometimes the Ryan boys to name some. Team speed must improve on the Browns, Greg little is not a game breaker, which if he was could put so much pressure along with the very talented Josh Gordon on the opponents defense both in the passing game and run game because they would have to play way off such a player if we had another one starting. ( By the way Josh hold on to those first passes, in Buffalo game and Detroit game the first passes thrown to you could have been TDS or 40 50yd Yac catches. So lets stockpile great talent at each position, make sure they have top level speed, agility, arm strength, power, size, heart and drive to succeed and full love for the game, then coach them up with position coaches that are the very best teachers. Don’t trade away top draft picks or trade down our top 1st rd position when a Julio Jones is there like Mangini did, now yes when the other team gives up the farm or gives up higer 2nd , 3rd round future picks an the guy that is in round one is not a blue chip cant miss guy ok maybe trade down then. Also mediocrity and sucking comes from a team not putting hard hits on the opponent when possible bust that azz harder than that fool on the other team has ever been hit especially the QB but darn it do it legally, hit him so darn hard he will be hesitant or just fall down because he doesn’t want to experience a near death legal hit again LOL, make that fool say yo name or say uncle before you even hit him again. If the Browns do this and get the reputation as the hardest dam hitting team in the NFL it will result in more wins and big plays. We often let a runner or offensive player get off easy, by throwing just a shoulder into him and dam if he don’t break away, DONT DO THAT BUST HIS AZZ! like a man , head up, full power launch use all your weight and propel yourself like a nuclear missle and blow his azz up flat out. Show no mercy and don’t help his butt up,save your strength and feelings too, for your wife,kids or loved ones at home. Go out and get a serious threat at PR/KR besides Travis Benjamin to be highly leathal in the return game, speaking of special teams, when will ever block a punt or extra point C`MON MAN! upgrade your special teams in every phase of specialteamdome. Don’t just be average, Special teams can win you 1 to 3 games a yr coupled with solid play on defense and offense. We must get 2 more Eric Metcalf, Darren Sproles type recievers out of the backfield on passing downs or 2nd down or whatever down hail! Now yes he can be bigger, taller faster, more powerful than Metcalf but a true receiver running back . Search the waiver wires and darn make good trades and stop keeping guys who are so darn slow and regularly speed on the offense especially. Do all this and of course for the fist time ever draft or get a QB who is not only smart but who wil kill the defense with fast and good running ability and who uses it at the proper time , ie kapernick, Russell wison, rg3 or whoever else is doing the run and pass great with his qb game. Sure those players not always available but please stop drafting slow, poor running qbs like WEED, the great Bernie Kosar, Charlie Frye ( he ran okay but was kinda slow and akward)

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