THE MONDAY MORNING DUMP 11-4-13

Here’s what I liked about the Browns 24-18 win over the Ravens;

The bounce back game that Davone Bess had!  After fumbling a punt and dropping 3 passes versus K.C. to raise his NFL leading total to 9, Bess came back yesterday and made 3 HUGE catches that were instrumental in the Browns win. 2 touchdown grabs and 3rd down catch late in the game that picked up a first down and allowed the Browns to eat up most of the clock down the stretch and help preserve the win. Kudos to a guy I would have cut a week ago.

Loved Jason Campbell’s toughness, game management skills and play making ability. He could of easily left the game late in the first quarter when Haloti Ngata fell on him and severely bruised his ribs. Instead Campbell gutted it out and made plays that Brandon Weeden would have never made. Campbell also didn’t turn the ball over once and threw 3 touchdown passes.  Outstanding performance!

Greg Little also came up big in the win. Yes he has to shut his mouth a bit and play smarter, but he made some tough catches yesterday and played very physical, which he needs to do more of.

Hats off to head coach Rob Chudzinski for getting his team ready to play and then executing an aggressive game plan from start to finish. Loved this post-game quote from Chud, “We’ve been the kid brother in this division for a long time. If you want to change that, you have to do things to change it. It’s a matter of being aggressive.”  That mindset rubbed off on his players yesterday and it was a big reason they prevailed.  Joe Thomas post-game comments back that up, “I expect to go for it on fourth and 1. That’s Chud’s mentality. He has confidence in us and it’s built into his philosophy.”

The Browns controlled the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball and when you do that you improve your chances of winning dramatically. On defense they recorded 5 sacks and held the Ravens to just  55 yards rushing. On offense, they gave Campbell enough time to find his open receivers and ran the ball just enough to keep the Ratbirds defense honest.

The Browns are now (4-5) overall and (2-1) in the division. Yes they’ve got to close strong with 7 games remaining, but to have 4 wins already going into the bye week and be the only team in the division with a winning record in the division, that’s showing major improvement. I expect the Browns to get back to .500 after 12 games. That’s right I expect them to be (6-6) going into the final 4 games of the season as long as Campbell stays healthy.

And let’s give some credit to the front office who’s taken a lot of heat from yours truly and many other media members in town. Joe Banner and Mike Lombardi have done an above average job so far with a lot of the moves they’ve made. That trade with the Steelers on draft day is looking pretty good now, as the Steelers are tied for the 4th worst record in the NFL. Bringing in both Jason Campbell and Brian Hoyer at quarterback have paid major dividends as Hoyer is (3-0) as a starter and Campbell is now (1-1) while Weeden is (0-4). They got abused for trading Trent Richardson and that deal seems to be going in their favor as well. So maybe, just maybe, this front office does know what they’re doing!

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