It's always rough being a Browns fan. This year, it's even more difficult. The new Browns owner, Jimmy Bedlam III, is trying very hard to avoid going to jail, and as such it appears to this observer that the team is no longer able to finance the business of playing football.
Today the Browns were beat up by the Ravens. They gave up five more sacks today, on top of six given up to the Miami Dolphins last week. That projects to 88 sacks in a single year. At this rate, it is only a matter of time before Brandon Weeden is injured. Weeden actually looks pretty good to me, and being able to throw for 227 yards is pretty good, especially with this terrible offensive line.
Brandon Weeden was sacked five times, as the fragile Browns O-Line could not protect him against Baltimore. Photo: http://assets.nydailynews.com/polopoly_fs/1.1456749.1379277752!/img/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_635/browns-ravens-football.jpg
It's also clear to the Village Elliot that the Browns do not have the personnel to run the ball effectively. The Browns did not obtain a fullback in the off season, instead moving Chris Ogbonnaya from halfback to fullback, where he is undersized. However, he saves the team money compared to All-Pro Vonta Leach, who did not interest the cost conscious Browns when he was a free agent last summer. The Browns also cut third down back Brandon Jackson in another cost savings move. And though Jordan Cameron has been very good as a receiving tight end so far, the Browns did not obtain a pass-blocking specialist as a second tight end, and instead saved money by cutting Kellen Davis. If the Browns had hoped to be a run-first team, they should have put together some road graders on the offensive line as well as a blocking fullback and blocking tight end, and then they might have been able to run. However, that would have cost money. As it is, Trent Richardson is a good halfback but without a team to support a commitment to run the ball, it looks to me that they are going to have to pass the ball most of the time. Behind Trent, the Browns are saving money by not keeping a short yardage specialist, and there is also no pass catching third down specialist either. So the plan is for the injury prone Trent to get all the touches at running back, and then hope that he somehow stays healthy.
On defense, the Browns actually played rather well. Their strength is in the front seven, while the secondary was neglected iln the off season, as the Browns saved money by cutting veterans Sheldon Brown and Usama Young, with third round draft choice Leon McFadden being the primary replacement.
Looking at the positives, the Browns actually lead the NFL in several categories, including sacks allowed, most dollars under the salary cap, and most undrafted free agents on the roster.
At least all this cost savings is going to a good cause, as Browns fans everywhere are just delighted to help owner Jimmy Bedlam III save money in order to keep his company (Pilot Flying J) out of bankruptcy, while keeping himself out of jail.