“And then I said, I was going to wreck this league.”
Positives: Nowhere to go but up after this game
Pass Defense: Although the Bengals really didn’t have to pass the ball often, the Browns secondary was able to hold Andy Dalton to just 117 yards on 14-for-24 passing, including an interception. Dalton had a QBR of 27.3. Considering the Browns were down Joe Haden, Tashaun Gipson, and Justin Gilbert, and K’waun Williams, not a bad day for the secondary.
Browns Fans: Jeremy Hill tried to jump into the Dawg Pound, then this happened:
Craig Robertson: One of the few bright spots on the Browns defense, Robertson led the team in tackles with 10, and had a big interception in the 2nd quarter. On the season, Robertson has 82 tackles and 2 interceptions.
Paul Kruger: Kruger only had one sack on the day, but it was his 10th on the season, the last Browns player to have 10 sacks on a season was Kamerion Wimbley in 2006, when he had 11 sacks.
Negatives: This was by far the worst game the Browns have played all season.
Run Defense: The Browns had no answer for the Bengals run game. Cincinnati had a game plan today, and it was a simple one, run the ball down the throat of the Browns defense. Rookie running back Jeremy Hill had 148 yards and 2 touchdowns on 25 carries, even back up Giovanni Bernard was able to put up 79 yards on the ground. The final nail in the coffin was when little-used running back Rex Burkhead was able to rumble into the end zone with 23 seconds left in the game. On the day, the Bengals ran for 244 yards on 45 carries, an average of 5.4 yards per carry.
Offensive Line: When Joe Thomas is getting false start penalties, you know your offensive line is having a bad day. Johnny had little time to throw, and sometimes had little time to even hand the ball off. Terrance West and Isaiah Crowell often were hit in the backfield.
Injuires/Depth: Down to your 4th-string center, and forced to play Jordan Poyer at cornerback, injuries have taken their toll on the Browns. Joe Haden left the game early in the 2nd quarter, and will most likely miss the last two games. Here are the key guys on the injury list right now: Phil Taylor, John Hughes, Miles Austin, Alex Mack, Karlos Dansby, Joe Haden, Tashaun Gipson, K’waun Williams, and Justin Gilbert.
Time of Possession: The Bengals had the ball for 39 minutes, while the Browns held the ball for 21 minutes.
Johnny Manziel: All of the problems that occurred in this game centered around Manziel. The defense played badly because of Manziel, the run game was terrible because of Manziel, heck, the Cavs are losing because of Manziel. All joking aside, Manziel does shoulder some of the blame in this game. His 2 interceptions harked back to his Texas A&M days (in a bad way), he only had 80 passing yards on the day, and his running ability was virtually nil. No matter how you slice it, a QBR of 1.0 won’t cut it, even if you’re Peyton Manning or Tom Brady.
Run Offense: At least Alex Mack will be back next year. On the day, the Browns leading rusher was Terrance West, who had 23 yards rushing. The Browns totaled on 53 yards on the ground on 17 total carries, and average of 3.1 yards per carry. On par with how the season has gone since Mack went down.
Penalties: 9 penalties for 68 yards, enough said.
Draft Picks: New record! The Browns waited until December 15th to start looking at where there picks will fall. As it currently stands the Browns would have the 14th and 19th picks in the draft.
This List: I really could have listed a lot more in the negatives section, but I will spare some of your suffering and stop here.
— Chris Sladoje (@CST_Doje)
AP Photo/Tony Dejak