Cleveland Browns: Keys to a Week 2 victory in Baltimore

BALTIMORE, MD - NOVEMBER 10: Running back Isaiah Crowell
BALTIMORE, MD - NOVEMBER 10: Running back Isaiah Crowell /
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Cleveland Browns
CLEVELAND, OH – SEPTEMBER 10: Defensive end Cameron Heyward #97 of the Pittsburgh Steelers sacks quarterback DeShone Kizer #7 of the Cleveland Browns during the second half at FirstEnergy Stadium on September 10, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Steelers defeated the Browns 21-18. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

With a revamped offensive line in 2017, Cleveland is confident that they will find more production offensively even with a rookie quarterback and young position players. While it is still much to early to tell whether or not the organization’s investment in the upgrades on the line will pay off, it is quickly becoming evident that this unit is going to have their hands full due to Kizer’s habit of staying in the pocket too long.

Last week, Kizer took seven sacks. This wasn’t completely the fault of the offensive line of course, as the rookie held on to the ball in the pocket for much too long at times, and the pressure was bound to get to him. But it’s never good to give up seven sacks, and the offensive line can improve.

Related: Grading the Browns offensive line after Week 1

In order to do this, they are going to need to sustain the pocket for longer. But it isn’t necessarily as simple as that. If the Browns can find more success on the ground this week, they won’t be faced with so many third and long situations. They won’t need to throw the ball as much, and Kizer will be healthier and more productive as a result.

There are a lot of ways to make sure the pocket stays intact to give Kizer a chance to lead the Browns to victory. But they all begin with the offensive line and their ability to outplay a difficult Baltimore front in the trenches.