There is no sugar-coating Sunday’s Browns’ 38-14 blowout loss to the Los Angeles Chargers at First Energy Stadium. The team is now 2-3-1 on the season after getting trampled from that team out west. It was an embarrassing performance one week after such a promising win over the Baltimore Ravens, 12-9, in overtime and an overall stretch of pretty solid football by Hue Jackson’s bunch.
For starters, the Browns were depleted at wide receiver with both Rashard Hollywood Higgins and Derrick Willies hurt. Then, to add to the misery, WR Rod Streater obtained a neck injury on special teams early in the game and also note that Breshard Perimann was inactive after just signing with the team.
There had to be someone in the stands capable of taking a few snaps!
Needless to say, quarterback Baker Mayfield didn’t have much to throw to and it showed. He went 22/46 for 238 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions and was sacked five times. It was a pretty awful performance, but it’s tough when most of the receiving core was out. Still, he needs to be better and held accountable.
WR Jarvis Landry had a disappointing game with two catches for 11 yards. Damion Ratley led the team with six catches for 82 yards. Duke Johnson Jr. had four catches for 73 yards and TE David Njoku caught seven balls for 55 yards and a TD.
The defense was pathetic, specifically the run defense. Melvin Gordon III had 132 yards rushing and three touchdowns. Austin Ekeler added 60 more yards. As a team, the Chargers had 246 rushing yards. Phil Rivers only needed to pass for 207 yards and his team won 38-14.
I predicted Los Angeles to take this game, but I admittedly thought it would be a close game. The fact that it was on the Browns’ home field coming off of a huge win against the Ravens, I thought they’d play with some fighting spirit. Additionally, Baker sustained a leg injury sliding on the sideline, which did not help the cause.
The Browns put Joe Thomas’ 10,363 consecutive snaps in the Ring of Honor during today’s game. The team could have honestly used him out there for a couple more snaps as Baker was under pressure all game.
Frankly, Jarvis Landry is making 75 million bucks and the fact that he only caught two balls for 11 yards is ridiculous.
On the CST Pregame Show (shameless plug, listen next week), I told fans to not get too high on these Browns quite yet. I hope today was a sobering reminder that this team has a long way to go before it’s competitive. HOWEVER, they are certainly on the right track and should not let one poor performance discourage the overall long-term goals for this franchise.
I hope for a better outing next week in Tampa Bay! Go Browns!