Cleveland Browns Weekly: Mid-Season Grades
November 14, 2012 By Nick Broulis
Welcome back all to the Cleveland Sports Report as I am here to both preview the upcoming contest between the Browns and Dallas Cowboys as we head down to Cowboy Stadium. The old saying of your are what your record is does not describe this Cowboy team. Dallas has a ton of talent. Great defense but an offense that is inconsistent.
Tony Romo from week to week is on and off again. One week he's finally figuring out what it takes to be elite..........the next week not so much.
What I'm getting at is that it's not out of the question to go down to their place and win. There is no such thing as a sure win. So with that being said I think we have a chance but we must limit our turnovers and we must score touchdowns and not settle for 5 or 6 field goals.
Now onto my grades.
The Secondary was looked at to be a strong point for the team this year. T.J. Ward has been an average safety since his rookie season. He is a sure tackler but hasn't done well in pass coverage. Young is decent but not what I'm looking for in the long term. Sheldon Brown should be gone next season. Haden has been by far the bright spot on this unit. I give the Secondary a C+ because they have kept us in most of the games.
The linebacker core is up next. Nothing much to discuss here. Jackson is his normal solid pro and James Johnson seems to have a nose for the ball as well but take those 2 away and this group is pretty bad. they get a D.
Next is the front Four. First and foremost I expected a bigger season out of Sheard then what he has shown me so far. I expected him to be tearing apart quarterbacks at this point. Frostee Rucker has made some noise this year. This pickup from the Bengals has done some good things. Injuries to Rubin and Taylor haven't helped but nonetheless this unit gets a D+
Moving onto special teams. I've been impressed for the most part with our coverage unit as they haven't given up any huge returns for the most part. On kick returns we have left much to be desired and Cribbs has been critised for his lack of returns so far. They get a B-.
Now we head to the wide receivers. Again we lead the league in drops. We don't have stability at wide receiver and still no clear cut #1. some nice catches have been made but again some of the dropped passes have no passes that should have been caught. This unit gets a D+.
Now onto the offensive line. Thomas is Thomas and Schwartz has done well in his 1st season at right guard. Still we have not done well in run blocking but thankfully our pass protection has improved to an extent. The offensive line scores a B-.
Brandon Weeden. The gun slinger from Oklahoma State. This older rookie has come onto the scene and made your usual mistakes but for me, he has clearly done a much better job than McCoy did. He has an arm and has made some nice throws. I would like to see him improve on his reads and reading of the defense before the snap. Weeden gets a C+. You must say wow a C+? Really? Let's get Two things straight right now. He's a rookie so he is still learning and will mnake mistakes. Number 2. He came from a spread offense and is still learning a new offense and my final point is that he has clearly shown he can make throws that McCoy can't.
Last but certainly not least. the Runningbacks. Good mixture of youth and veterans but let's break it down to one guy and you know who that is. Trent Richardson. I call him "The beast from bama". While dealing with injured ribs Richardson has ran well and is now expecting to run for 100 yards a game or more. The backfield gets a B-
Overall you can't expect many good grades from a 2-7 team. We can't build a consistent winning attitude and we are terrible on the road. At least we have won 2 homes games yet we are still in need of pro bowl cailbur players. I'm thinking 5 wins total but who knows, we've been that team over the years that shocks the world.