Cleveland Browns Come Crashing Back to Earth in 38-21 Loss to Redskins
The Cleveland Browns played perhaps their worst game of the season on Sunday, getting blown out by the Washington Redskins, 38-21.
Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden looked nothing like the quarterback who, while sometimes inconsistent, was rarely utterly confused and dominated by an opposing defense.
His performance on Sunday is certainly a large contributor to the Browns’ loss, as he threw two interceptions, including an extremely costly one on a drive in the second half when the team was still in it. Wide receiver Greg Little was wide open and Weeden simply underthrew it; he would finish the day completing 21 of 35 passes for 244 yards, a touchdown, and the aforementioned interceptions.
However, a loss of this magnitude cannot simply be placed on Weeden. Despite an interception by safety T.J. Ward that was nearly returned for a touchdown in the first quarter, the Browns’ defense looked as baffled as Weeden.
Redskins backup quarterback Kirk Cousins – making the first start of his career, mind you – kept the Browns defense at bay all game long through bootlegs and rollouts, which either left receivers wide open or more than enough room for him to run.
Cousins would finish the game with 26 completions on 37 attempts for 329 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception.
And to make matters even worse, running back Trent Richardson had two – yes, two – carries in the entire second half for zero yards.
So where do the Browns go from here? With their playoff hopes dashed and a horrendous performance against the league’s 31st-ranked pass defense, the Browns must find a way to right the ship in their last two games against very solid opponents – the rolling Denver Broncos and the Pittsburgh Steelers with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.
It was an ugly game for the Browns, and it came at the worst possible time. When it’s this late in the season, and a new front office is already leaning towards a new direction next season, this doesn’t do much to change its mind.
Of course, this could all change next week on the road against one of the NFL’s hottest teams.
But after a performance like Sunday’s, it’s anybody’s guess as to what team shows up in Denver.