Special teams isn’t usually the first thing that enters the minds of Browns fans when it comes to keys to the game. It is, however, what most think of when they think of field-position. For the Browns though, it is so much more than special teams, but it is all about field-position.
Last week against Tennessee, Cleveland had alarming troubles with starting field-position. Before the fourth quarter, the Browns’ best starting field-position on the afternoon was equal to the Titans’ worst. While Cleveland made it a habit to start inside their own 10-yard-line, Tennessee frequently approached midfield before running a single play. It could be argued that field-position was the difference in the game.
This week, this has to change. While there is no magic formula to cure the issues the Browns have had with field-position, it is critical to be able to flip field-position by moving the sticks a few times when needed at the very least. It is also very helpful to get off the field defensively on third down.
Of course, there is a degree of special teams play which has an impact on field-position. If Cleveland’s punter, Britton Colquitt, can have a repeat performance of last week when he averaged almost fifty yards on seven punts, the team shouldn’t have the same issues.
But they still need to be cognizant of the devastating impacts continued poor field-position can have. Doing this will alter their game plan in a way which ensures that Kessler and the offense is placed in a much better situation entering Sunday’s game. This, the Browns hope, will be one factor which renders the team a different result than what has come of the first six games.