December 5, 2005
Obligatory Bitching About Football
Let me start by saying that overall I'm happy with how Charlie Frye handled his first start. He made some dumb rookie mistakes -- mostly holding the ball too long -- but since he's a rookie I can deal with that. He's a great deal more accurate than Dilfer and he seems to make better use of his receivers.
No, my problem with the Browns is their play calling. Offensive coordinator Maurice Carthon understandably wanted to go with the run to keep pressure off Frye, but he went to the well too often. The Jags figured out that Drougns was going to be carrying the ball a lot (more than 20 touches in the first half) and started stacking the line. The Browns found some balance late in the first half, though, and went into halftime leading 14-3.
Then they threw it all away. It was apparent early on that they made no adjustments at the half, and that the Jaguars did. Of course, that's why the Jags are now 9-3 and the Browns are not. After a chicken-shit offensive pass-interference call effectively killed a Browns drive, you could see that everyone gave up. More on that in a second.
And now for an entry you'll probably see in TMQ's article tomorrow:
Why are you punting?
Trailing by six with just under three minutes to go, the Cleveland Browns (release 3.0) faced fourth-and-seven in their own end. This is obviously four-down territory, since Jacksonville can easily run out the clock when they get the ball, so you're going to go for it, right? Boom goes the punt. You're 4-7, down by less than a touchdown and playing at home; why are you punting? And now you are 4-8.
Seriously, though... I don't know if it's Carthon or head coach Romeo Crennel, but someone on that sideline seriously needs to grow some balls. They went for it on fourth-and-one early in the game and failed (a draw play on fourth-and-one?!) but they chickened out when it really counted.
Edit, Tuesday afternoon: Well, TMQ proved me wrong. Nothing about the punt that gave away the game, but he did mention the pooch-punt that Dawson launched from the Jags' 29 earlier in the game.