Saturday, August 13, 2016

Browns Lose to Packers, 17-11

  It's just an exibition game, but there is a lot to be excited about and a lot of work to be done.  The Packers played with second and third stringers on offense, with  superstar Aaron Rodgers and his backup quarterback Brent Hundley both sitting out.  Receivers Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb also did not play. So the Browns should have looked better on defense.  

Photo Credit:  .   Emmanuel Ogbah and Xavier Cooper close in on the Packers' quarterback, Joe Callahan. 

   First the positive;  DE Carl Nassib and OLB Emmanuel Ogbah both looked very good, both against the run and in rushing the passer.  I don't see any reason why they can't both start.  
    Jamie Meder was also very good and generated instant energy when he was on the field.  I think he should definitely start. 
    In the defensive backfield, Jamar Taylor made some good plays and established good coverages, although he also looked bad on a missed tackle.  

On offense, Raheem Mostert showed some breakaway capability, though he also committed a fumble on punt return. I also thought that Terrell Watson looks like he should be a good running back, catching some balls out of the backfield and running hard for short yardage. Terrelle Pryor caught a deep ball from RG3 early on.  He beat his man in one-on-one. Duke Johnson had a good run with his only touch of the day.  Josh  McCown had a big play called back.  But otherwise the Browns were pretty much shut down by the Packers, gaining only 172 total yards to the Pack's 320. Ouch.  

I'm not concerned about RG3's interception on what appears to have been a busted play.  The kid still has the cannon for an arm and is still very mobile.  He will have to be, as the Browns really don't block much on the offensive line.   In particular, Cameron Erving whiffed badly on some of his assignments, which led to a hit on the quarterback, and another time forced RG3 to throw the ball away immediately. Erving had a terrible game.  On the other hand, I saw him sustain a few blocks and dominate his opponent, so maybe there is hope for the kid.  Not ready to give up on him--yet. But he is still very very raw, especially for someone who fancies himself a master of  all five OL positions. 

     The Browns Defense still gave up plenty of yards on the ground.  In particular, Danny Shelton looked tired and he looked beat, and he could not stop the run.  The defense played at a higher energy level when he was on the bench.

    The most depressing stat is that the Browns only caught 11 balls total yesterday.   From the wide receivers, Pryor had two catches, recycled undrafted Rannell Hall had two and Rashard Higgins had one.  That's it.  A very dismal showing.
   I miss Brian Hartline.  Hartline is old and slow by NFL standards, but he is at least a professional wide receiver.  I don't know about the Browns' kiddie corps at wide receiver.

   Your opinion is certainly as good as mine, but if I were coaching the team I would get more first string practice reps for Carl Nassib DE, Jamie Meder NT,  Emmanuel Ogbah, OLB, and Mike Matthews C.