Hue Jackson and the Browns’ coaching staff seem to be lost. After all, they failed to make adjustments in pass protection, they failed to run a balanced offense, and they failed to prepare their defense for a dynamic offense.
For an offensive-minded head coach, Jackson certainly isn’t doing the offense any favors. On 54 total plays, the Browns dialed up passing plays on 41 of them. This is stunning, especially since Cleveland was in the game into the fourth quarter.
Defensively, the Browns just aren’t disciplined enough. This is a direct reflection on the coaching staff, including Ray Horton, who spends the game in the booth rather than on the field. They also aren’t cut out for a 3-4 scheme, yet Horton insists on it. As mentioned earlier, the defensive line is doing absolutely nothing to help the team, putting the rest of the defense in a very difficult situation.
Most of all, the inability to make adjustments during the game is concerning. The fact that Jackson, an offensive expert, can watch a free rusher run past the offensive line untouched on every play and not make a change is maddening. After all, it was simple math, the Steelers were sending one more than the Browns could block. But Jackson, instead of noticing this during the game, allowed the same problem to bite the Browns over and over and over again.
After the game, Jackson delivered his weekly onslaught of clichés to the press, acting as if he had just completed a stroll in the park. “We have to play better,” and “We’re not quite where we want to be,” probably won’t make Monday’s headlines. What may though is Jackson’s inability to find a single win through the first 11 games of the season.
For Cleveland fans who just want one win in a 16-game season, why this is so difficult is puzzling. Ultimately, it reflects negatively on a coaching staff unable to prepare their team sufficiently and make the necessary in-game adjustments.