A review of Game #12 – Browns vs. Colts
I don’t know what’s worse – horrible quarterback play or the referees being completing biased. Both occurred for the Cleveland Browns, and it was just enough to ensure Andy Luck came away with another win. The Browns were completely the superior team on the field – however some bonehead plays and poor calls made sure the Colts won.
Offense: The red zone interception was all you needed to see from Brian Hoyer. He singled-handedly killed that drive, while stopped a few others with some very off target tosses. He ended with another contest without throwing a touchdown and heaving two interceptions – his days are (finally) numbered as a starting quarterback in Cleveland. It has been so disappointing it has come to this, but it should be Johnny time next week.
Isaiah Crowell and Terrance West each had fifty-four yards in this contest. The only great play was Crowell’s nifty touchdown run. The team could have utilized the running attack more – but that is becoming a broken record. If they refuse to run it against a poor unit as they did on Sunday, I doubt they will the rest of the way in 2014.
Two catches for fifteen yards for Josh Gordon? Hoyer missed a few throws, but the Browns have mismanaging the wide out terribly. Andrew Hawkins and Jordan Cameron each had four receptions; they were the leaders of a unit that could not get the ball frequently. It all comes down to quarterback play for great numbers for receivers. The Browns didn’t have it and the targets suffered.
Fortunately the offensive line only surrendered one sack. However, they were far from stout in opening up running lanes. When facing a unit they ought to dominate, the gang fell short. Ryan Seymour held his own at the center position – he could be a keeper going forward. It was apparent that Jordan Cameron still cannot block, and should not be put that in that situation to do so.
Defense: So Andy Luck was the leading rusher for the opponent. This would lead to the home team having success, but ultimately it was not. Desmond Bryant, Ahtyba Rubin, and Billy Winn each put a hit on the signal caller and helped the team control the line of scrimmage. The defensive line played relatively well – but they could not make up for the offensive misfortunes.
Paul Kruger had a phenomenal contest – the veteran had a sack and a forced fumble, which was recovered by Craig Robertson for a touchdown. The penalty on his sack was incorrect, and cost the Browns dearly. Instead of a Colts’ punt, they got a field goal in a game they won by a point. Robertson and Mingo each played well for the Browns. The former had twelve stops, while the latter had a sack, a pass deflected, and five quarterback hits.
There’s not much more than the secondary could have done. An interception by Jim Leonhard, a pick six by Justin Gilbert, and great pass breakups by Joe Haden were some of the highlights by the Browns’ secondary. Donte Whitner was in position to win this game, but could not seal the critical stop on fourth and one late.
Special Teams: Billy Cundiff’s miss of a forty-yard field goal was the difference. The veteran is on his was out of Berea and cost this team a win. Otherwise, the Browns dominated in the special teams matchup. They completely shut down Josh Cribbs and any return units.
Coaching: Why didn’t they go to Johnny Football? The coaching staff still believes Brian Hoyer is the guy – and they were clearly wrong. Jim O’Neil had a great game plan for this defense. But it was all for naught as the offense let the team down once again. Bye bye playoffs, the Browns’ steak will now go to (at least) thirteen years since they made the postseason.