ESPN Cleveland

Analysis: Browns' loss assures worst record among eight new coaching staffs in 2013

Dec 22, 2013 -- 5:09pm

By Tony Grossi | ESPNCleveland.com

 

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ

Tony Grossi's Take on Browns 24-13 loss to the New York Jets

Offense: Dropped passes, missed throws, two interceptions, failed opportunities … yech. Josh Gordon had six receptions (for 97 yards) on 16 passes thrown to him. He had at least two drops and failed to come down with a couple of fades in the end zone. Greg Little had two drops and was benched for a quarter. Jason Campbell (18 of 40, 178 yards) couldn’t hit the Empire State Building if he was standing next to it. In all, they ran 20 plays inside the 20 – including 13 inside the 10 – and scored only one touchdown. Bottom line: Bad enough to consider a QB change.

Defense: Allowed 208 yards on the ground – and that included an 11-yard loss on a reverse. They made it easy for turnover-machine Geno Smith, who didn’t throw an interception or lose a fumble. Smith also hurt them with 10 runs for 48 yards, including a 17-yard TD on which he wasn’t touched. David Nelson, cut by the Browns at the final roster cut, had two touchdown catches and a third-down conversion on the last possession. No pass rush whatsoever. This unit has now lost to the 31st- (Jacksonville) and 32nd-ranked (Jets) offenses in the last four weeks. Bottom line: Utter embarrassment.

Special teams: Spencer Lanning had a robust 49.3-yard net punting average on three punts. Jordan Poyer had a 29-yard punt return and Fozzy Whittaker had a 50-yard kickoff return. The Jets had zero yards on returns. Zero. Bottom line: Don’t pin this one on them.

Coaching: It was so bad that defensive backfield coach Lou Cioffi left MetLife Stadium on crutches. He injured his right knee when Geno Smith was pushed out of bounds on a keeper run. The rest of the coaches limped out without crutches. This loss all but assures this staff of having the worst record among the eight new coaching staffs in place this season. They're tied with Jacksonville's Gus Bradley, and already have lost to the Jaguars. Bottom line: In total free-fall.

 

Tony Grossi covers the Browns for ESPN 850 WKNR, ESPN 1540 KNR2 and www.espncleveland.com.

He has covered the Browns with distinction since 1984 and is one of 46 voters for the National Football League Hall of Fame. Email your “Hey Tony” questions to tgrossi@espncleveland.com

Follow Tony on Twitter @tonygrossi

 

 

 

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