Cleveland Browns: A rebuilt offensive line in 2016
By Joel W. Cade
Find out why and how the Cleveland Browns overhauled one of the league’s best offensive lines.
The offensive line was supposed to be the strength of the Cleveland Browns heading into the 2015 season. Unfortunately, it did not turn out that way. There are two main reasons for this. First, the Browns tried to combine a zone running scheme with a vertical passing game. Second, once the Browns finally changed to a Power run scheme, the players did not fit the scheme.
Now the Browns are moving forward with Hue Jackson and his West Coast/Power run scheme. Under Jackson, there will be an emphasis upon the QB delivering the ball quickly and accurately to play makers. In the run game, there will be an emphasis upon double teams combined with pulling linemen in order to create a numerical advantage at the point of attack. This scheme will fit both Browns running backs perfectly. But can the current Browns offensive line make Hue Jackson’s system work?
The answer to this question is no. An offensive line with Joe Thomas, Joel Bitonio, Alex Mack, John Greco and Mitchell Schwartz would not make a Power run scheme work. In order to explain why, we must examine what went wrong last year and what that means for this season.
Next: What went wrong in 2015