Browns lose as a team to Bills 24-14

The Cleveland Browns just weren’t good enough today. The defense wasn’t great, but they consistently gave the Browns’ offense a chance to win. The Browns’ offense showed some flashes but either shot themselves in the foot or had some calls work against them. There is no giant goat for this one. This was just a team loss all the way around, from the get go. It was made even worse considering the Bills played the majority of the game without their burgeoning star running back, C.J. Spiller who was injured by Usama Young after a gain.

You won’t win many games in the NFL when spotting your opponent a two touchdown lead and that’s just what the Browns did. The Browns gave up two touchdowns in the first quarter. The Browns’ defense got torched on the first drive. The Browns gave the Bills great field position on the second drive via a Reggie Hodges punt that appeared to out-kick the coverage. That Bills scoring drive was four plays and 49 yards. Meanwhile the Browns had nothing but three and outs in between.

The refs made some bad calls, but it didn’t feel like either team was more ripped off. In fact, it occurs to me that I am not really complaining about the officials any more or less than I did a year ago. They certainly slow the game down more, but ultimately I’m just not sure they’re that much worse than any other humans officiating a fast, violent game.

Still, all said and done, the Browns were trailing 17-14 to start the fourth quarter. Trent Richardson had a TD run in the second quarter and the Browns mustered an impressive drive of 80 yards on 13 plays. It was capped by Travis Benjamin faking his corner out of his shoes and breaking wide open in the end zone, on third and 10, no less. Browns 14- Bills 17.

The Bills went three and out thanks to the Browns defense, but the offense couldn’t capitalize to start the fourth quarter. It was one of those times where you could feel the Browns could see the chess board in front of them, but just couldn’t capitalize on the momentum. Sure enough, the Bills go for 68 yards and a TD to go up 10.

The Browns and Bills might have well just hit the fast forward button from there. Punts and interceptions and basically awful football as the Browns failed to do anything but look like a young team incapable of coming back but trying so hard they played even worse. You can probably pick apart the game from that point on, but it was pretty much already in the books.

A frustrating game to say the least. Another winnable one for the Browns. There were some somewhat bright moments, but on the whole, the team was just too disjointed to build and capitalize on any momentum. The game flow is predictable and in this case with the Browns that is a bad thing. They need to break the cycle and find a way to play with confidence. And would it be too much to ask that they strike first at some point and not spot the other team points?

(AP Photo / Tony Dejak)

  • SDA

    I go completely back and forth on this. Childress is game planning but not calling plays.Shurmur seems to be a control freak.It makes me wonder if Holmgren would have (or still could) put his foot down and let Childress call the plays and force Shurmur to be only a head coach what would happen? Not making excuses per say, but sometimes we have to be forced to see the light. We are definitely playing better football. I always think back to how bad I crucified Belichick back in the day and look at him now. And before everyone takes that as me saying Shurmur is Belichick, I’m not. I just think everything isn’t black and white.The best organizations make good initial decisions and don’t make changes on a yearly basis.

  • good point.
    ori should not have to say ‘i told you so.’
    someone here should acknowledge how right he’s been on his behalf.
    let me.


    keep up the good work ori.

  • BuckeyeDawg

    This. The game was theirs to win. They just scored a TD and the defense held Buffalo to a 3 and out. We had all the momentum in the world. Good teams take advantage of this situation and at the very least, get a FG to tie the game on the next drive. Instead, we pissed down our legs and gave the ball back to them and they scored the clinching TD.

    It was right there for the taking, and they couldn’t do it.

  • JK

    It’s hilarious that people think that Shurmur makes that much of a difference to this team. Guys, they’re bad. They’re always bad, yet somehow people always try to blame the coach no matter who it is… Guess what, the coach isn’t playing. When at almost every position the other team has someone better than you, you’re probably not gonna win. Is he a bad coach? Probably. BUT if we had (insert whomever you think is the best coach in the NFL) do you think we would be 5-4 in our last 9? What about 2-7? Maybe. But there is just not enough talent on this team to win in the NFL. PERIOD.

    Also, who is the girl in that picture? I think I love her.

  • 5KMD

    As long as he chirps up just as consistently when he is wrong about something, That’ll be fine. But I doubt that will ever happen…since he will never be wrong.

  • Garry_Owen

    Wow. That got out of hand quickly. The Browns lost (again), and somehow the interneters, donning LCD armor and wielding their keyboards as weapons, got down to the serious business to killing each other. And the Fourth Horseman of the Relationship and Civility Apocalypse reaps his reward . . .
    You suck! No, you suck! Well, you’ve always sucked! Well, you’ve always sucked worse!

  • JK

    I still have CRT armor :/

  • Garry_Owen

    Stay far from the fray then, young squire. The brave and bold Comment Warriors can reach out and wound you through that stuff.

  • Jim, it’s not about being right. Nobody here dislikes Oribiasi because of his opinions. Those who dislike him do so because he’s combative, arrogant and insulting. I also think he’s wrong about me/WFNY. I don’t believe I’ve ever said once on here that Pat Shurmur is a good coach and just needs time / patience.

    After a week 1 loss to the Bengals last year…

    “Pat Shurmur’s reign as head football coach is off to a rocky start. How rocky will be decided next week in Indianapolis where the Super Bowl is scheduled to be played later this year. It might as well be the Super Bowl for this Browns team that had such high hopes with such an “easy” schedule to start the year.”

    Andrew on Pat Shurmur after that same game…

    “For Browns head coach Pat Shurmur, the game was a nightmare way to make a debut. The team looked unfocused, undisciplined, and just generally unprepared to play an NFL regular season game against an NFL opponent. Shurmur need not feel lonely, however, as he doesn’t sit alone. Rather, he joins the long list of Browns coaches who made less than stellar debuts for this franchise.”

    Even as Shurmur was hired, I didn’t try and tell you what he was going to be. I just said what he needed to be…

    “Pat Shurmur needs to be a good coach who can come in here for the long haul. That task isn’t really only riding on his shoulders though. It is up to Tom Heckert to make Pat Shurmur look like the savior next year with his personnel decisions. It is up to Pat Shurmur to make Tom Heckert look like a savior by getting the most out of the players that he is given. It is up to both of them to make Mike Holmgren look like a genius king sitting atop it all building a competitive winner.”

    I still stand by that even as Pat Shurmur starts another year with a team that wasn’t ready out of the gate.

    Go back, I didn’t praise Pat Shurmur once after two wins against the Colts and Dolphins last year. I defended Shurmur’s choice to pitch the ball to Armond Smith, but I hardly think that is me guaranteeing anything. It’s just one play.

    Then I said patience was in order for the Browns as they were 2-2 heading into the bye week. I was talking about the roster because of all the Peyton Hillis and Colt McCoy inconsistency going on. Didn’t mention Shurmur once in that article.

    Then after the Oakland game with another Hillis debacle…

    “It would be just a bad game if the Browns just showed up, played as a team and lost. The continuing embarrassing displays combined with the distracting side-show type events makes it nearly unbearable. This team was supposed to be making some progress this season, let alone out of their bye week. That just isn’t possible if you handle your business as poorly as the Browns did on Sunday in Oakland.

    I will never be the guy who sits here and tells you all is lost, but this needs to start with good answers from Pat Shurmur. If he doesn’t have any to offer then Tom Heckert and Mike Holmgren are on call for answers.”
    After the season, my negative tone led a commenter to ask me if I had lost patience with the Browns. In that response, I said the following…
    “Step one is identifying the problems. Step two is doing something about them. This whole season turned out to be step one. Step two is really difficult sometimes, especially when you have a head coach who also needs to make a huge leap from year one to year two. Especially when you have major questions about who will quarterback your team going forward. Especially when your front office hasn’t been together as a unit for very long with a track record for both drafting and free agency.”
    So again, I don’t really understand where anyone has “I told you so” status over me on Pat Shurmur…
    Is it because I said he seemed to have a different demeanor during training camp this year? He did. That’s just me reporting a fact and talking about it. He seemed like a totally different guy. He has regressed right back to where he was with the media since the ownership change was announced.
    That’s not me apologizing or saying Shurmur needs to stay. It’s simply me reporting what I saw.

  • Vindictive_Pat

    Well considering that Childress probably has a voice in the first several scripted plays, we might not want this. The Browns looked awful in their first 2 drives. I think that’s more on the players than anything else, but it’s certainly not an indictment of Shurmur.

  • mgbode

    exactly. see KC, Baltimore, Tenn this week. All were stuck in the same improbably situations but a small chance to win. All three of those teams found a way to scratch out the win (even if Tenn’s was aided by Shaun Hill being Shaun Hill at the end).

    we need to find a way to finish.

  • i just hope that that 1st pick isn’t spent on Matt Barkley.

  • Hypno_Toad

    I’m all for bashing him (or anyone for that matter) when I think it’s deserved. It’s just that after watching the game yesterday my first thought wasn’t “Man we’d have won this game if it wasn’t for Pat freaking Shurmur!!”

    I asked a simple question. How did he lose us this game? Funny that oribi and yourself had no answer for the question.

  • finally fed up fifty year fan

    With the first pick , Couch,Warren,Brown,Green,Faine ,must I go on.Another epic embarrassment in the making.Please God,do not let it be so.Oh why do You hate us so.

  • humboldt

    His team came out completely flat and inept in every aspect of the game. The offense (which he coordinates) had consecutive 3 and outs; the defense allowed two quick touchdowns; special teams allowed several punt returns into Browns territory.

    Later in the game, when we were down big in the 4th Shurmur ran consecutive play action passes when there was 0% chance of handing the ball off to Richardson. On the second one, Weeden took a decisive sack.

    I won’t even criticize the 4th down punt with 6 minutes left because it just doesn’t matter.

    Do you require more evidence or will you concede that Shurmur had a lot to do with the loss (and the other 14 he has racked up)?

  • just want to back up a step because i think youve inferred something i did not intend. my purpose was to point out without irony that ori has presented unpopular views here and for the most part been correct. i think it’s fairly courageous to stake out an unpopular position in a forum like this and worthy of acknowledgment when found to be on target.

  • Hypno_Toad

    The defense allowed two quick touchdowns (in my humble opinion) due to the severe lack of playmakers. When your best option at free safety is Usama Young, your best CB duo is Patterson and Skrine/Brown, and your best OLB tandem is Miava and Robertson you have issues. We couldn’t get a pass rush going because Miava and Robertson are next to useless as the pass rush, and because of the lack of pass rush our already questionable secondary has to cover Buffalo’s receivers for extended periods on each play, but even if we do get a rush the secondary is so suspect that I doubt they’d stop Fitz and Steve Johnson very much. All this not to mention the fact that our CB’s and OLB’s can’t tackle, so when Spiller busted it to the outside they couldn’t stop him. Shurmur could preach solid tackling all he wants but this group just isn’t going to get it done.

    The special teams has been horrible this whole year, but my gut tells me that Shurmur has spent more of his focus on our rookie QB, rookie RB, young OL, thin linebacking corps and secondary, and our stone hands receivers. But that’s a guess. Have we as fans ever brought the special teams coach into question? Do half of us even know who it is?????

    The head coach has his hand in every single win and every single loss so yeah, I give Pat the blame where he earned it.. There have been losses in these 15 where I wanted his head, this just wasn’t one of them.

  • I believe that the views aren’t nearly as unpopular as the abysmal way they are presented. I think most people agree to a large extent about a lot of what he says. I think an even larger portion would have been more than happy to come around and agree over time. The way the information is delivered (usually in an attacking fashion and with offers to allow us to publish guest posts to our front page) causes people to dislike the messenger and causes many to dig in on opinions they might otherwise abandon.

  • Answer this: the 49ers went from zero to hero with a new coach.

    The Saints went from amazing to 0-3 without their coach.

    With those two pieces of factual information, can you honestly say a coach isn’t very important and doesn’t make a difference?

  • Thanks, bro. I appreciate it.

    (See Craig, that wasn’t combative…even though apparently I always am).

  • JK

    I’ll answer your question if you promise to answer my question above which was:
    “BUT if we had (insert whomever you think is the best coach in the NFL) do you think we would be 5-4 in our last 9? What about 2-7?”
    To answe your question.. I have to start by saying I think you took me just a touch out of context. When I say coach “isn’t important” & “doesn’t make that much of a difference” I meant specifically our situation, you gotta have a little talent, we have almost none. I do think the HC is a littler overrated in general but come on man, the 49ers have one of, if not the best D in the league, a top 5 RB & other solid play makers. The Saints on the other hand have (had) players suspended, and their defense may even be worse than ours. Not to mention all the offseason BS that has obviously brought their team down.

  • Oh Craig…how dare anyone offer to write something for your site. It isn’t the Magna Carta, you know. It’s a sports blog. A good one, sure. But it’s not the United Nations Nuclear Proliferation opinion poll.

    You’re really bringing up my offer to write a factual piece of McCoy’s performance? You must really be desperate.

    Take a chill pill, or whatever it is you do. Come to Jesus (or whatever you believe in) and relax.

  • If you make a statement like “the coach isn’t playing” you’re implying that a coach isn’t that important.

    If you don’t mean that, then don’t say it.

    If the Niners had the best defense in the western hemisphere than you would need a certifiably insane person to go 6-10, as they did in 2010, and then come back and go 13-3 in the next season (they are currently at 2-1).

    For a team as young as the Browns (aren’t we like THE youngest or second youngest roster?) with major skill positions occupied by rookies (QB, RB), a solid, experienced and competent head coach is a MUST.

    Shurmur is none of those things. He’s a Holmgren family friend. He makes ALL the difference in this team.

  • You and I should have a beer sometime. I think you’d see where I’m coming from in a better way than from behind a keyboard.

  • Jim, you’re doing the Lord’s work. Now watch: Craig will never give me a feather (or whatever) for taking a stand on something. He will repeat his tired mantra of “he is telling the truth, sure, but he’s being mean to my apparently paper-thin ego and I don’t like it” and not acknowledge that it takes backbone to take a stand on something.

  • OMG, I have said so many times I was wrong about various picks/players. I am on record as saying that I loved the Tristan Thompson pick and I thought he’d be the best Ben Wallace. That doesn’t look like its ever going to happen.

  • JK

    So.. you didn’t answer my question. Good talk.

  • Sure I did. You just don’t know how to read.

    Here, I’ll bring it down to like fifth grade level: YES. We would be much better with someone like Harbaugh or Gruden (probably). Someone like that would NEVER have handed the ball off to Alex Smith on the goal line, or any of the other numerous stupid calls that Shurmur’s legacy will be.

    What I said above is that he does make the difference in the team, and that difference is 0-3.

    Therefore, you asked if a different coach would do better.

    So, my answer was yes.

  • JK

    Where is the talent on this team? You just said they’re young, the fact that you think they are also capable of winning is just about ignorant.
    Before I say what Im about to say you need to understand that I am not a fan of Pat Shurmur. Ok? Ready?
    Pat Shurmur didn’t throw 4 INTs on opening day, Pat Shurmur didn’t drop passes all 3 weeks, Pat Shurmur didn’t get tourched in the secondary weeks 2 & 3. We’re talking about talent here, these are professionals, they know how to play the game. So why can’t they tackle? Cuz coach Pat didn’t pull up his shorts in camp and show em? Gimmie a break, this isn’t pee wee. Look, you wanna cry about the Browns and be a little b**** on this message board that’s fine. You wanna act like you’re smart to justify your rage on Sundays, cool by me. But… you’re full of it bub. You want ANOTHER coaching change? Sure why not. How about this??? How about we change HC every 2 years until we reach the Super Bowl.. or by your standards, til a coach comes in with enough top 3 picks to turn a 4-12 team into a 10-6 team because guess what, that’s what happens when you’re bad for awhile, you get high picks, then a coach steps in and its magic huh? I wish I were near you so I could pick you up and rock you in a wooden chair and tell you everything is ok, because guess what? It is. It’s just the Browns, they always suck. You raging on this site, raging in the stands/at your family/in bdubs or wherever you watch the game won’t change that.

  • I think your opinion is hereby invalid because of this statement: “It’s just the Browns, they always suck.” How much support do you expect from this fan base that posts here when you make jerky statements like that?

    Go and be a fan of the Bills.

  • JK

    I think your opinion is invalid because you’re an idiot, you run your mouth & because of all the people up there ^^^ that also think your opinion is invalid
    Also, I’m a season ticket holder, I don’t give a rats ass what anybody on this site thinks, I’ve had nothing but positive feedback from everyone here but you.. but, like I said, I’m not posting for them or you. So. It doesn’t matter. Did I lie? Do the Browns not suck? Every year? Facts don’t blind truth hear my friend.

  • mgbode

    considering Barkely has 2 of the top10 WRs in the country and still cannot put up 200yd games, I think it’s pretty safe to say whoever is drafting is not drafting him with #1 overall.