NFL Power Rankings: Cleveland Browns holding steady


Dec 6, 2015; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap (96) sacks Cleveland Browns quarterback Austin Davis (7) during the third quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium. The Bengals won 37-3. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Coming off another embarrassing loss, the Cleveland Browns continue to hold firm on the bottom of the weekly NFL Power Rankings.

The Cleveland Browns are currently a hot mess in every sense of the phrase.

The Browns have lost seven in a row, nine of their past 10 games, 15 of their past 17 games, and 13 consecutive games in the month of December.

Cleveland has fallen to 26th overall in offense and 32nd in rushing. On defense, the club is 29th overall and 31st against the run.

In addition, the defense is currently on pace to give up 462 points – which would surpass the amount the team gave up in the expansion year of 1999.

And just to add to the fun, head coach Mike Pettine acknowledged on Monday that the Browns are a house divided when it comes to figuring out how to fix the problems that continue to plague the team.

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“I would say shocking, frustrating,” wide receiver Brian Hartline said when asked about the team’s struggles. “You know there’s probably going to be ups and downs and whatnot, but we haven’t really gotten out of the downs so that’s not a good thing. We didn’t picture ourselves [at 2-10]. We put a lot of work in, saw a good vision. Everyone bought in and we’ve been tumbling down a hill now, and we haven’t turned it around.”

It’s no surprise, then, that the weekly NFL power rankings paint just as bleak a picture about the Browns.

Elliott Harrison at (32, no change):

"Mike Pettine is allegedly on thin ice in Cleveland – and that’s not just an overreaction to a 2-10 season and a home blowout loss. There is no such thing as an overreaction in pro football to such a dismal record. Still, there is plenty of blame to go around in Cleveland outside of Pettine. … For instance, he is now reportedly going to start Johnny Manziel after instilling vast confidence in him. (Cincinnati No. 3, Pittsburgh No. 7, Baltimore No. 27)"

Frank Schwab at Yahoo Sports (32, no change):

"Sorry, just don’t get why the Browns wasted a week when they could have been evaluating Johnny Manziel to make whatever point they were trying to make. But hey, at least Austin Davis’ start went well. (Cincinnati No. 5, Pittsburgh No. 8, Baltimore No. 31)"

Sean Tomlinson at Bleacher Report (32, no change):

"Cleveland Browns head coach Mike Pettine punished his quarterback Johnny Manziel for lying to him about a boozy night during the team’s bye week. Forcing Manziel to sit and be the third-string quarterback in Week 12 should have been enough. Manziel had a chance to get into that game when starter Josh McCown was injured, but instead his only contribution was helping Austin Davis warm up."

"Pettine made a decision on Manziel’s punishment, and he stuck to it. But if part of a coach’s job is to field the best-possible team each game, why was Manziel benched again in Week 13? Because Pettine is now being senselessly stubborn; that’s why."

"Davis started Sunday, and he was predictably ineffective while leading an offense that scored three points. So now Tony Grossi of is reporting Pettine could turn to Manziel for the final four games—presumably because trotting out an inferior quarterback twice was enough. (Cincinnati No. 4, Pittsburgh No. 10, Baltimore No. 30)"

FanSided (32, down 2):

"Tim Couch. Ty Detmer. Doug Peterson. Spergon Wynn. Kelly Holcomb. Jeff Garcia. Luke McCown. Trent Dilfer. Charlie Frye. Derek Anderson. Brady Quinn. Ken Dorsey. Bruce Gradkowski. Colt McCoy. Jake Delhomme. Seneca Wallace. Brandon Weeden. Thad Lewis. Jason Campbell. Brian Hoyer. Johnny Manziel. Connor Shaw. Josh McCown. Austin Davis."

"Look at that list."

"In only one season since 1999 have the Cleveland Browns made it through an entire season with only one quarterback under center – 2001 with Tim Couch."

"At this point, the Browns are just a cruel, cruel mistress. It’s like some kind of sick sports Stockholm Syndrome going one between the city of Cleveland and its passionate, beleaguered fan base."

"They had the Brownies taken from them once, and they’ve come back loyally. How are they rewarded? With a giant heaping pile of manure. The only thing worse than watching this team on a weekly basis is not having a team at all. What kind of messed up situation is that?"

"The worst part of the Browns is that the franchise keeps making the same mistakes over and over and over and over again. They pick the wrong first-round quarterback, reverse course midseason, seek for a new savior the next year. They hire a coach, fall out of love quickly, seek for a new shepherd in the offseason."

"God bless the Dawg Pound for showing up every week. Blind loyalty is still loyalty. (Cincinnati No. 3, Pittsburgh No. 10, Baltimore No. 31)"

Pete Prisco at CBS Sports (32, no change):

"Mike Pettine finally will play Johnny Manziel. Why wouldn’t he? (Cincinnati No. 3, Pittsburgh No. 8, Baltimore No. 31)"

ESPN (32, no change):

"Johnny Manziel will once again get the start for the Browns. He has one win in three starts this season, while Josh McCown and Austin Davis have one win in nine combined starts. (Cincinnati No. 3, Pittsburgh No. 8, Baltimore No. 30)"