Airing it out not out of the question for Browns

Posted by Vic Carucci on September 22, 2011 – 7:39 pm

By Vic Carucci, Senior Editor

If, as it turned out, running was the best path to success in the Browns’ Week 2 win against the Colts, the passing game could very well emerge as a larger factor in week three.

In losses to the Patriots and Texans, the Dolphins haven’t done a whole lot to get pressure on the quarterback. So far, they haven’t gotten much in the way of a rush from their defensive line. When the Dolphins have managed to generate heat, they’ve relied mostly on blitzes and the pass-rushing of their outside linebackers.

Colt McCoy would be pleased if his protection was as solid as it was against the Colts, whose dynamic pass-rushing duo of ends Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis managed only one sack (because McCoy held the ball too long).

Last Sunday, McCoy turned a corner in his career with a sharp, efficient game that saw him complete passes to eight different receivers. When his tight ends had issues getting off the line against a Colts defense that was determined to limit their impact, McCoy went to his receivers. His best throw of the day was a 28-yarder to a well-covered Mohamed Massaquoi that set up the first of two Peyton Hillis touchdown runs.

McCoy was patient in the pocket, did some nice things on the move while passing and running, and made good decisions. He also was impressive in shrugging off Freeney’s hard, blind-side hit and playing the rest of the game as if it never happened.

The Dolphins do have a pair of talented outside linebackers in Cameron Wake and veteran Jason Taylor, but the pair is not nearly as dominant as Freeney and Mathis.

With some comfort in the pocket, McCoy has the ability to shred a Miami secondary that has not played particularly well through two games.

And his impact could be even greater if the Browns, once again, are able to run the ball with the same authority they showed at Indianapolis.

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