By Vic Carucci, Senior Editor
Here are some thoughts on the first half of the Browns’ game against the Chiefs at Cleveland Browns Stadium:
What I liked…
>>The Browns responding well to early adversity. After allowing Jamaal Ravens to run 80 yards for a touchdown on the first play of scrimmage, the Browns collected themselves and found a way to take a 10-7 halftime lead. It was particularly impressive that they got points after the Chiefs’ Ryan Succop hit the left upright on a 27-yard field-goal attempt. Although it was only a field goal, it definitely made the Chiefs pay a price for that mistake.
>>Travis Benjamin’s 93-yard punt return for a touchdown. I love the fact that, at the last instant before Dustin Colquitt’s kick, Browns special-teams coach Chris Tabor had Josh Cribbs move out of the return spot and run to the line while Benjamin ran from the sidelines to be the returner. Benjamin showed both his tremendous speed and elusiveness in going the distance.
>>The Browns’ defense keeping the Chiefs’ offense mostly in check. Again, allowing that game-breaking run was ugly, but the unit has been preventing Brady Quinn from gaining any confidence in his Cleveland homecoming. The Browns have managed to generate a solid rush with their defensive line and have, for the most part, left Quinn few holes in the secondary to exploit.
What I didn’t like …
>>The Browns allowing that 80-yard touchdown run by Jamaal Charles on the game’s first play from scrimmage. The Browns have a habit of struggling against zone-blocking rushing attacks. When the offensive line is able to create seams with movement, it opens cut-back lanes. The Browns did tighten some things up after that, but they need to be even tighter against the run.
>>Weeden’s general pocket awareness. He needs to be more alert after dropping back, especially against such a strong pass-rushing team as the Chiefs.
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