Mistakes by the lake add up to another Browns loss

Self-inflicted wounds costly, will doom season if they continue

Daryl Ruiter
October 14, 2019 - 1:00 am
CLEVELAND, OHIO - OCTOBER 13: Head coach Freddie Kitchens of the Cleveland Browns yells to his players during the first quarter against the Seattle Seahawks at FirstEnergy Stadium on October 13, 2019 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

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Cleveland, Ohio (92.3 The Fan) – All this talent and the Browns still can’t win football games.

The stench of losing continues to follow them no matter how many stars they add, and following their latest defeat, it will waft through the bye week where a trip to New England awaits after on Oct. 27 and loss No. 5 will probably follow.

Following Sunday’s latest debacle, a 32-28 loss to the now 5-1 Seattle Seahawks, the Browns are 0-3 at home for the third time in 4 years and sixth since 1999.

Baker Mayfield threw three interceptions, which weren’t solely his fault, but he now has an NFL-worst 11 on the season.

After scoring 3 touchdowns in their first 3 drives, the Browns saw the end zone just once more over their final 9 that went like this: blocked punt, interception, interception, end of half, fumble, punt, turnover on downs, touchdown and interception.  

Nick Chubb uncharacteristically fumbled in the third quarter but made up for it with 122 yards rushing and 2 touchdown runs.

Odell Beckham Jr. had two third down passes go through his hands in the first half. Beckham, who had just 1 catch in the second half, got picked by a Seahawks defender on a slant to him that led to Baker Mayfield’s first interception of the afternoon.

Jamie Gillan had a punt blocked and Austin Seibert missed a PAT to the left.

The Browns squandered a 20-6 lead allowing the Seahawks to score 19 unanswered points. They bounced back to regain the lead after falling behind 25-20 in the third quarter to take a 28-25 advantage early in the fourth quarter but could't hold it down the stretch.

Then there were the penalties – 9 of them for 83 yards.

Questionable calls or not, the flags – and the volume of them – have torpedoed drive after drive after drive this season.

After the game Beckham lamented that they could be 5-1 or 6-0 but what they could be doesn’t matter. They aren’t playing like a team that could be anything than what they are.

Is it a bad time to mention the Pittsburgh Steelers, who are on their third quarterback this season, won their second game since losing Ben Roethlisberger Sunday night?

A season full of hope and expectations is teetering on the edge of going down the drain – and we say that regardless of what’s on the schedule the rest of the way. Including the Patriots, their first 7 opponents are a combined 26-14 while their last 7 are 14-25-1 and if you want to count the Steelers and Bengals twice, 16-35-1.

There’s no excuse – not even awful officiating, and Sunday we saw some of the worst the league has to offer – but 2-4 is unacceptable. Not with this roster and talent.

Head coach Freddie Kitchens isn’t helping the cause either.

Kitchens wouldn't run Chubb at the end of the first half and use timeouts because he thought they could score quickly on a TD pass, then use 3 timeouts on defense, get the ball back and then score again – all within 96 seconds.

Let that sink in.

Instead of working on the ground to run down the clock and go up 27-12, it was a 20-18 game at half because after the interception in the end zone, Seattle raced down the field in 67 seconds and scored themselves off the turnover.

In 6 games the Browns have been penalized 57 times for 506 yards.

They have 14 turnovers on the season for a plus-minus of -6 this season.  

While these are fixable problems, they’re also disturbing trends.  

There’s a lot of season left after the bye week, but if the Browns continue to play the way they have the first 6 games, it’s going to be a long, miserable stretch run.