3. Hue Jackson
The honeymoon period for Hue Jackson is over as it pertains to most Browns fans.
Everybody around the NFL knows that it is another rebuilding year for the franchise, but what comes with that is progress and a change of culture. It’s not only a change with personnel, but also with the approach of the offense and defense.
So far, there hasn’t been any significant change.
Ray Horton is in his second stint with the team. During his first tenure, he drew up exotic packages for the defense that would keep opposing offenses honest, but this year, he’s yet to do it.
This is a young, developing defense, however, holding them back could cause more harm than good.
Offensively, besides the first quarter outburst from the team, the play calling has been stagnant and conservative. Jackson has allowed the quarterbacks to throw down the field instead of checking down, but it’s been hit-and-miss.
Without a consistent running game, it’s hard for any offense to progress, and spread the ball around. Fans saw what the threat of Crowell did. Can he remain consistent and play with that intensity for the remainder of the season?
I’m not blaming Jackson for the loss, but some of his play calling and time management did contribute to it.
In the second quarter on 3rd and 18, instead of giving his receivers a chance to make a play downfield, he called a draw to Johnson that gained eight yards. Some were making the case that it was for field position.
While that’s true, the Browns were nowhere near field goal range, and no matter where the ball is punted to Devin Hester, he’s a threat. This train of thoughtgoes back to knowing your personnel.
Jackson also committed the same issue that former Browns coaches have, and that’s getting away from what worked. Crowell had an 85-yard run for a touchdown, but he barely received any carries afterwards because Jackson wanted to throw. He should of just preserved the lead with the run.
But what happened next was the biggest fear.
With two minutes to go in the fourth quarter, the Browns wasted valuable seconds trying to figure out what play to call. Instead of sprinting back to the huddle, player’s were walking around like the game just started.
That’s all on Jackson. He must set a precedence about that behavior. It should be intolerable,and should cost the player’s important playing time.
These shouldn’t become trends for Jackson, but it’s definitely something for Browns fans to notice early.