That damn 0-16 parade is looking pretty likely right now. The Cleveland Browns put together a miserable first half and couldn’t dig themselves out of the hole they had made, eventually losing to the Cincinnati Bengals, 23-10.
I usually enjoy the comedy and general shenanigans of @Reflog_18 on Twitter, but I really despise his parade. I’m not going to take some grandiose stance here, I just don’t want another embarrassing clip to add to the montage of Cleveland Browns failures. I’m really struggling to understand what the point of the parade is.
Is the point of the parade to shame Jimmy Haslam, Dee Haslam, and the Browns’ front office? We all knew this was going to be a season devoid of wins. Before the season began, we debated how many wins the Browns would have and WFNY-comment-section regular, Lunch the Breakfast Sandwich, tallied the predictions from everyone involved and posted them on his blog. Nobody had the Browns winning more than eight games and the most common prediction was two wins for the season. Does this mean that the purpose of the parade is to let ownership know that we are OK with two wins, but we won’t stand for zero wins? That seems useless.
Is the point of the parade just to have fun? I don’t see anything fun about it. I see a bunch of self-important people acting like clowns to grab some time on camera. Some people don’t mind that the rest of the NFL and its fans find the Browns to be a huge joke. I’m not one of those people. I want this team and its proud history1 to be revered by the NFL and its fans. I don’t want to perpetuate the clown show.
There is a new regime in charge of the Browns this season, and I want them to have a chance to rebuild this team without the shackles of past disappointments and a passive-aggressive, bitter fan base. Save the parade until there is a reason to have it.
Now, let’s get back to our regularly scheduled program.
Four sacks in one game? Christmas must have come early this year! The Browns were able to take advantage of the Bengals’ poor pass protection unit and finally put together a decent effort.
Emmanuel Ogbah had his best game of the season sacking Andy Dalton once on his own and another time with the help of Stephen Paea. Ogbah has improved as the season has worn on, and he is our best bet to start opposite Myles Garrett next season, if the Browns take the overwhelming favorite at the first pick of the 2017 NFL Draft.
Jamie Collins continues his impressive form for the Browns en route to 15 tackles and a sack. However, the secondary has not fared nearly as well as Collins and the Browns could not create any pressure once the ball was in the air. They weren’t able to get their hands on a single pass in this game.
QB Hits: 6
Tackles for loss: 4
Passes Defensed: 0
Week 14 PRESSURE Grade: 3 (out of 5)
GETTING OFF THE FIELD
The defense was able to get off of the field with some success in the second half, but they struggled mightily in the first half. The Bengals converted 8-of-15 third down scenarios and the Browns only managed to force one fumble, which they couldn’t recover. The lack of turnovers and the Browns’ inability to stop running back Jeremy Hill were big reasons for the loss.
Third and Fourth Down Conversion Percentage: 53 percent
Potential Takeaways: 1
Opponent Time of Possession: 34:53 (out of 60:00)
Week 14 GETTING OFF THE FIELD Grade: 2
Robert Griffin III graced us with his presence for the second time during the regular season, and the results were very similar to his first game. Griffin showed horrible inaccuracy with his passes and seemed to struggle to read the opposing defense and move to his next progression. Griffin’s 2.7 yards per pass play is the worst tally of the season for the Browns. Griffin only managed to put up a paltry 104 yards passing in the game.
Isaiah Crowell racked up more yards than Griffin on 15 fewer plays. Crowell only received 10 carries in the game, but racked up a fantastic 113 yards on those plays. The offensive line did a much better job opening holes for Crowell to run through, and recent acquisition Jonathan Cooper did a nice job in his right guard role. Duke Johnson was also effective on limited carries and accounted for one of the few plays to go over 20 yards.
One game after an impressive 131 yard performance, Terrelle Pryor just about laid an egg, catching one pass for three yards against the Bengals. The reason for his failure is mostly on the shoulders of RG3, who simply could not put the ball anywhere near his star receiver.
Plays of 20-plus Yards: 3
Red Zone Conversion Percentage: 50
Yards/Run Play: 7.7
Yards/Pass Plays: 2.7
Week 14 PLAYMAKERS Grade: 2
Quarterback protection still wasn’t good, but it was a step in the right direction. The Browns gave up four fewer sacks, three fewer quarterback hits, and eight fewer tackles for loss than they did against the New York Giants. That seems to be progress even if the result is still not where it needs to be.
I know it isn’t saying much, but Cameron Erving may have had his best game for the Browns. He was useful in the run game and wasn’t a disaster in pass protection.
I want to see more from Jonathan Cooper, but if he continues with efforts like this one, he will supplant John Greco at the right guard spot and the Harvard Brain Trust will get credit for a steal.
Opponent Sacks: 3
Opponent QB Hits: 8
Opponent Tackles for Loss: 3
Week 14 PROTECTION Grade: 2
There were certainly some things to be happy about after this game. The offensive line showed improvement, the run game was popping, and the linebacker corps looks stronger.
However, there are also several areas that continue to be a problem. The most notable is the quarterback position. I am fine with Hue Jackson trotting out Robert Griffin III for a couple more games to prove that he is not a viable option for the future, but I have already reached that decision. I just want Jackson to keep Cody Kessler healthy and in a place where he can be a useful backup quarterback if not more. There’s no doubt in my mind that the front office will need to address this position again in the offseason.
Next week the Browns travel to Buffalo to take on the Bills. Of the remaining three games, this will be the Browns’ best chance at a win. The Bills have a middling record at 6-7 and for whatever reason, the Browns always seems to play them tough regardless of their record.
Please Browns, just do like you usually do against the Bills and put this embarrassing parade to rest.
- Save your “that history went with the Ravens to Baltimore” talk, I’m not interested in it. [↩]