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The Broulis Beat Report: Browns End Playoff Hopes In Loss To Ravens

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The Browns lose to Baltimore 31-15 and another game of being out-coached among other things in this edition of the Broulis Beat Report.

  1. I really try throughout the week to convince myself to give Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens another season, considering this is his first season as the head man. Once the game gets here and he over complicates the offense to the point of being a big reason for each loss, I want him gone. You have two of the best running backs in the league in Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt and on a third and short, you get too cute and that play alone is what seemed to change the entire game. All you do is simply hand off the ball and let your offensive linemen do their job and get a fresh set of downs. I can’t understand how or why you make things so difficult. That was just one play, in a season full of questionable play-calling.
  2. This game shouldn’t have been the type of game where Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield is throwing the ball, for what seemed like every play, against a Ravens run defense that isn’t very good. Mayfield attempted 33 passes, completing 20. Baker hit on two touch down passes and one interception.
  3. Combining Chubb, Hunt and Mayfield, Cleveland rushed the ball 20 times for 49 yards. Why didn’t Chubb get at least 20 touches? Why wasn’t Kareem used properly again? Again, over thinking an offense with so much talent. I understand that Cleveland doesn’t have the best offensive line, but run-blocking is what they’re best at, so run the ball. This offense should run through Chubb and Hunt.
  4. Cleveland did a great job of containing Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson in the first meeting. Today, Jackson rushed for 103 yards. This is where not having Myles Garrett (indefinitely suspended) on the line and rushing the passer hurts the Browns. Last year and earlier this year, while listening to sports radio on my way home, hearing some callers say that Garrett is overrated and Cleveland shouldn’t extend him. Since Garrett has been out, the lack of a pass rush and horrible run defense has been a glaring issue. I hope that anyone that reads my columns and feels that way towards Garrett understands that you make yourself sound like a fan that lacks a lot of intelligence. Garrett has been a good run defender and forces the pocket to collapse much faster than what you’ve been watching lately.
  5. How many times in games will defensive coordinator Steve Wilks call defenses where the middle of the field is wide open, allowing teams to pass the ball right over the middle? I understand that the players have to execute the plays and this is not all on the coaching staff, but the coaches need to do a much better job of putting players, offense and defense, in better situations. Mark Andrews had another good day with 6 receptions for 93 yards, including two touch downs. Both over the middle, one where he wasn’t even touched.
  6. After that dreaded play call on third and short that forced a Browns punt, the Baltimore Ravens went right down the field twice in less than two minutes and put 14 on the score board. After halftime, the Ravens came right back out and scored again. Once again, a team that came out and didn’t look prepared.
  7. It’s no secret that the Ravens run the ball. They make no secret about it. So, why do you still allow 481 total yards with 243 of those yards on the ground? The game plan against Baltimore is to force Jackson to throw the ball. He has improved as a passer, but forcing the Ravens to be a passing team throws them off their game plan.
  8. How about these stats from a guy, me, that isn’t much of a stats guy? First downs (BAL-31, CLE-17), rushing first downs (BAL-16, CLE-2), total yards (BAL-481, CLE-241) and time of possession (BAL-34:19, CLE-25:41) almost a ten-minute difference. That’s most of a quarter’s worth.
  9. Cleveland was constantly allowing too many yards on first and second down. Whether it was on the ground or passing. Giving up five yards and more on the first two downs really makes things easier on an offense on third down and much more difficult for a defense.
  10. Next weeks game in Cincinnati is meaningless from a playoff standpoint, but the entire coaching staff should be coaching as if they’re on the hot seat. If Cleveland losses to a very bad Bengals team, that could end the Freddie Kitchens era.

Credit all authors of images used in both article and as cover image : Nick Broulis

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