Browns-Bears: Don's Game Preview

Browns-Bears: Don's Game Preview

Chud sees the light after a frustrating loss. Not sure anyone else does.

Rob Chudzinski "sees the light."

The Cleveland Browns' first-year coach said this not 24 hours after the Browns blew a game that even for the Browns was mind-boggling. I mean, we've seen our share of miserable ways to lose football games and I'm not evening talking about the Big Three that occurred in the 80s.

Last Sunday's loss was frustrating because of many things not limited to:

The inability to recover an onside kick.

The dumb and questionable penalties called on Browns' defensive backs.

The lack of timeouts at the end of a game that inhibited the Browns' offense, as they attempted a last-ditch effort to get in field goal range.

But what was most frustrating was seeing this four-win team play pretty damn good football for 58 minutes only to blow it in the final two.

Perhaps it is the 58 minutes that Chudzinski is focused on and not the debacle that was the final two. As fans, it is hard not to look past that disastrous ending and call this group and regime "the same old Browns."

Maybe coach is right?

Nothing truly is going to get solved until the Browns find a franchise quarterback. It's not Jason Campbell. It's probably not Brian Hoyer. It's definitely not Brandon Weeden.

Yet this team does have some noticeable talent on its roster and perhaps Josh Gordon, Jordan "Campbell" Cameron, Joe Thomas, Joe Haden, Barkevious Mingo and Phil Taylor are reasons why the coach is optimistic. Toss in a capable quarterback and the Browns may have something.

They may also just be 8-8, but it sure beats these four and five win seasons.

Sunday is the final home game in the now outdated FirstEnergy Stadium. The next time the Browns play a football game here there will be new scoreboards among other amenities. That's nice, but I think we'd all just prefer winning football.

Can the Browns send out the "old" FirstEnergy Stadium with a win? The Chicago Bears and its high-powered offense come to town. That just sounds weird, but the Bears are averaging 28.3 points per game, which is good for second in the NFL.

The Bears have a 1,000-yard rusher and two 1,000-yard receivers. So, Ray Horton, who you gonna stop?

Running back Matt Forte has 1,073 yards and seven touchdowns on 234 carries (4.6 yards per carry average) and also caught 65 balls for 518 yards. At wide out, the Bears employ Alshon Jeffery (75 catches for 1,193 yards and six touchdowns) and Brandon Marshall (84 catches for 1,090 yards and nine touchdowns).

Jeffery is 6-foot-4, 230 pounds and Marshall is 6-4, 229. Thems some big boys.

So, coach Horton, I ask you again, who you gonna stop?

For all the impressive numbers that have fantasy football geeks salivating, the Bears quarterback situation is a bit dicey. Jay Cutler returns this week and replaces a red-hot Josh McCown. Cutler hasn't played since Nov. 10 and before that he last played Oct. 20. Are the Bears ruining a good thing?

Now as good as Chicago's offense has been, their defense has been bad. Browns quarterback Jason Campbell is back to playing good football and gets a soft defense that is allowing opponents to rush for 5.2 yards per carry. Hell, the St. Louis Rams hung 42 on the Bears on Nov. 24.

Bad Bears defense is ripe for another BIG game from Josh Gordon, who is making these seem routine. The only problem is these big games aren't correlating into Browns victories.

With three games remaining the Browns need some victories if the fans are going to share Chudzinski's vision of a promising light. Most fans are still seeing red after another disheartening, demoralizing and disgusting loss. Of course, that's also known as Browns football.

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