Monday, December 17, 2012

Boomer's Game Recap: Browns humbled in loss to Redskins, 38-21

Trent Richardson into the end zone for his 2nd of two
rushing TD's in the game vs. Washington.
Recap: Rookie QB Cousins, fills RG3's shoes, 2 TD's in 1st career start, leads Redskins
Box Score: Redskins 38, Browns 21 Final

Pssshhh. Talk about your free fall back to reality. Following, a three-game winning streak, there was a nice buzz around the city of Cleveland with the direction the Browns were headed in with the recent success. Then they welcomed to town, a 4th round draft pick, Redskins rookie QB Kirk Cousins, in a substitute role for RG3, and the Browns were handed a 38-21 defeat, in the teams home finale for the 2012 season. The Browns finished the home slate of games at 4-4. Bootleg, after bootleg, after bootleg, Cousins shook off a shaky start to the game, to absolutely dominant the Browns throwing for a team-high 329 passing yards on the season, throwing 2 touchdowns. The Browns led 14-10 at the half, but a Brandon Weeden interception on the Browns opening possession of the 2nd half, set the mood for the rest of the game. The Browns despite the recent success the last few weeks, showed that as they are improving, they are still a ways away from being a week in & week out winner in the NFL. Been a couple weeks since I mentioned this, but #fireshurmur.

The Offense
Let's talk about the positives on the day. Trent Richardson, continues to play tough despite not being 100% from his rib injury suffered earlier this season. Richardson, set a pair of rookie franchise rookies in the game vs. Washington. Scoring two rushing touchdowns on the day, the 1st breaking Hall of Famer and Browns legend Jim Brown's record for rushing touchdowns by a rookie. His second set the franchise record for total touchdowns by a rookie. Moving forward, T-Rich is going to be key for the Browns offense in years to come, and following a four-point halftime lead, it was disappointing to hear Richardson was held to ZERO yards in the 2nd half on just TWO carries. The reason you drafted him was to run him late in games to win, but the Browns were unable to establish the running game all day, as they were held to just 58 yards on 15 carries. The reason, because the gameplan was to pass the ball on a team that was ranked 31st in the NFL against the pass. Mission failed! Rookie QB Brandon Weeden, again, struggled with pretty much everything (overthrowing receivers, throwing behind them, telegraphing passes, and throwing a couple more INT's). His season total tallies 17 interceptions with two more games left. The Weeden project has been an up and down trip all season, with more down's then up's, as the 29 year old rookie QB, hasn't played up to the ability of his fellow draft mates from the 1st round and/or the other rounds for that matter. We'll see where the team goes after the final two games, but I just want a QB that we Browns fans can rely on for the next decade. Where are you franchise quarterback?

The Defense:
In the game, 21-points by the offense, I would have liked that with the way this unit had been playing in recent weeks. Unfortunately, I was mistaken, and after "I last count" the number of play-action bootlegs by rookie QB Kirk Cousins making his 1st career start under center, this unit was humbled. How bad would it have been if RG3 would have started in this one...healthy! The defense played well in the first half, but following halftime, they made no adjustments and seemed to be fooled on every single play-action pass by Cousins. On the day, the Redskins gained 430 yards of offense (308 passing, 122 rushing). At one point during the game, I leaned over to my brother and mentioned, "Cousins was available at 22nd overall in the NFL Draft this spring" haha. Heck, I would have been fine with the Browns drafting Russell Wilson in the 3rd round like Seattle did, knowing what I know now. It was disappointing to see this unit play the way they did in this game, especially against a rookie QB making his 1st career start. Now, this unit goes on the road to go up against the Denver Broncos & QB Peyton Manning, haha.

Next Week:
The Browns (5-8) now move on from this humbling lose, with two more games left in the 2012 campaign, as they travel out west to the "Mile High City" this weekend to take on the AFC West Division Champs the Denver Broncos (11-3).