Find an Offensive Identity
The offseason’s much-heralded Browns offense has stuttered throughout the first three weeks of the season. Freddie Kitchens play-calling has left many Browns fans scratching their heads, highlighted by a 4th and 9 running back draw play for Nick Chubb. Baker Mayfield has not looked as consistently sharp as he did throughout the second half of last season, and Odell Beckham Jr. has seemingly yet to find his fit in this offense. Something has to give.
Analyzing the game film from Week 3 is telling, as the Browns’ best drive of the season saw the offense click into place, even if it ended with a field goal. Quick passing seemed to work for the Browns, rather than having Baker Mayfield sit back and pat the ball in the pocket. As good as Mayfield is, and for as good as he can be, running back Nick Chubb still feels like the key to Cleveland’s offense.
The Georgia product is averaging four yards per carry this season, and has shown himself to be a consistent offensive weapon under Freddie Kitchens. In the absence of Duke Johnson, Chubb has stepped up to the plate as the firm leader of the running back room and succeeded in keeping the offense afloat through Mayfield and Kitchens’ struggles.
The Browns have to find an identity and fast. Whether it be through Chubb’s powerful, angry rushing style, or Mayfield’s deadeye accuracy in the hurry-up passing game, the Browns have to concoct an offensive scheme that works.
Putting major points on the board is essential against Baltimore, and it can also go a long way towards keeping the ball out of the hands of Lamar Jackson. Austin Seibert can’t score all the points himself from here on out.