In a season like the one the Browns are currently in the midst of, it is very easy to over-react and try too hard. This became very clear on special teams last week when they ran out three kickoffs instead of taking a touchback to the 25-yard-line, costing them field position each time.
Much like the first key, the Browns have to capitalize on any opening the Bills give them. Buffalo has some talent, but they by no means will play a flawless game. Taking what is there for the taking will get the Browns closer to victory than they may realize.
Much of this is on special teams, but it isn’t just this unit where this adjustment has to be made. Defensively, Cleveland must be careful not to over pursue in their pass rush against a mobile quarterback. Taylor will take off and run, and could easily take over the game with his legs. Making sure the pocket is secure takes discipline and coordination, two areas where the Browns have struggles immensely this season.
Also, since the Bills like to place an extra offensive lineman and tight end on the left side of the formation and run McCoy to the right, Cleveland has to avoid being drawn in. They must stick with their assignments and not over-react to any given formation.
Most of all, when something doesn’t go Cleveland’s way, the Browns must keep playing. As this past Sunday’s game revealed, there are lots of opportunities throughout games to recover from mistakes that are made. A fast start would be nice, but it isn’t essential in this one.
It will be fascinating to observe in this one whether or not the Browns and Bills will come out with the intensity that they will need to win. Both teams are in positions where quitting is common, yet the best can come out as well. This is why this game is so unpredictable in many ways. But what is known is that the Browns will absolutely need to play four quarters consistently, an pay attention to these five areas especially.