Red Right 88

In Cleveland, hope dies last

The Browns give good headache

The Browns being the Browns, and Cleveland being Cleveland, it’s never easy around here.

It’s not enough to take a look at the standings and see the Browns at 3-3, just one game back in the loss column, in the toughest division in the NFL during a season where most expected them to win five or six games.

“I do think it’s important that we won the game and each game, you win or lose it in a different fashion,” coach Pat Shurmur said on Monday. “The fact that our guys found a way to win it, I’m proud of their effort.

“I thought the defense played an outstanding game,” Shurmur said. “When I watch the tape, you just see guys battling all over the place. Up front, I asked the guys to fight to control the line of scrimmage, which they did and it really eliminated any big plays. In the secondary, they challenged the receivers from the first snap to the last. I’m very proud of their efforts and I’m proud of the scheme that we put together.”

It’s always something with the Browns, who hit the highs and lows on Sunday:

  • The Browns’ six points on Sunday were the lowest total for a winning team in the NFL this season. That’s a lot better than having the highest total for a losing team.
  • The Browns totaled 20 first downs and had five drives of 10 plays or more against Seattle, but somehow only managed to score six points.
  • The Browns have now played four 6-3 games in franchise history and won them all. They may be on to something here, we’re just not sure what.
  • We may have figured out why Colt McCoy is struggling this year – God cares too much about Tim Tebow to worry about anyone else.
  • The Browns had 24 third-down attempts Sunday, which are the most in a single NFL game in the past 20 seasons, according to ESPN Stats & Information.
  • Montario Hardesty ran for 95 yards, but 20 of his carries were for two yards or fewer.
  • The Browns did not have a drive that made it to Seattle’s 20-yard-line until 4:10 of the fourth quarter, according to Cold Hard Football Facts.com.
  • The defense is currently ranked No. 4 in the NFL, allowing 4.7 yards per play, down from 5.4 yards per play last year.
  • And we don’t care who the opposition has been, the Browns are playing good defense. They’ve given up just 13 points in the past two games. People want to have it both ways – if the Browns were getting shredded on defense, the hoople heads would rip them, but they don’t want to give them credit when they do play well.
  • The defense allowed just 137 yards in total offense against Seattle, the fewest they’ve allowed since a 1993 game against New Orleans.

It’s times like this that we feel like Thornton Melon, Rodney Dangerfield’s character in Back to School.

There is one scene in the movie where Thornton is talking to his driver, bodyguard Lou (played by the always solid Burt Young). The two are complaining about Thornton’s current wife and, after a while, Thornton says, “Lay off Vanessa, she gives good headache.”

And if there is one thing we can count on that the Browns do well, year in and year out, is that they give good headache.

(Photo by Cleveland Browns.com)

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