Let’s start with the good…(crickets chirping)…ok, let’s move on.
I’m not even going to take time to talk about the final play. Yeah, the refs probably got that one wrong, but there were two calls that could have been reversed and weren’t earlier in the game. The refs aren’t to blame for this game. The Browns are.
First the bad. 1. Josh Cribbs and the return team. Josh gets a pass for this performance. He has played at a pro-bowl level this year, and so we give him a break for the fumble yesterday. The return team as a whole did not perform well yesterday. The Cardinals squibbed several kicks instead of giving Cribbs the opportunity to burn them, and the Browns didn’t seem to know how to handle those kicks. They nearly lost another kick-off by not fielding the ball properly. 2. Derek Anderson. DA made poor choices with the ball. He overthrew and under threw receivers all day. His sloppy play forced the Browns to abandon the running game too early.
Now the ugly. This one goes to the entire team, but probably needs to be pinned on the coaching staff. What in the world is going on with this team and stupid penalties? Bodden kicks a ball after a big third day stop for a 15 yard penalty? After the penalty gives a first down to the Cardinals they finish the drive for a TD. How many false start penalties do we average a game? That is the most ridiculous penalty, and is a tell-tale sign of a team without discipline. Andre Davis and the offsides penalty on the final drive? You are right over the ball!!
Stupid mental errors were too much to overcome this week. What is disturbing is that these happen week after week. It finally caught up to them. How about fining these players for these dumb penalties? Why shouldn’t Bodden get a $5000 fine for that idiotic play? Why not a fine for that stupid late hit that gave the Cardinals an extra 15 yards on their final drive? Or here’s an idea, at least give the players an earful when they get back to the sideline! Crennel doesn’t even seem to get upset about these penalties!
The Browns need to bounce back this week and play smart football against the Jets. Should they win this game? Absolutely. But you can’t have a -3 turnover margin and expect to win. You can’t have 9 penalties for 74 yards and expect to win. By the way, that is what the Browns are averaging for the last six games- 9 flags for almost 75 yards a game!
The Browns wake up this morning now tied with the Titans for the final Wild Card spot. If they don’t eliminate these miscues they will more than likely fail to reach the playoffs.