Cleveland Browns Dud: Joe Woods’ Defense
There’s only one word to describe the Cleveland Browns defense through two weeks in 2021 – bad. After looking shaky in their matchup with the Kansas City Chiefs, they again looked unprepared and unable to contain a rather lackluster offense of the Houston Texans in Week 2.
Who is to blame for the defensive woes? Defensive coordinator Joe Woods is one unpopular man, according to Browns Twitter. Having his players unprepared and looking lost at times for the second week in a row doesn’t sit well with fans, especially after the talent the team added to the defensive side of the ball to help fit his scheme.
The players on the field, however, still aren’t blameless. The linebackers are often slow to react, and the defensive backs show flashes, but still get beat too often. Facing an offense that has one primary threat in wide receiver Brandin Cooks, and allowing them to threaten you late into the fourth quarter is not a good look for a team that aspires to go deep into the playoffs.
Whatever the real issue is, be it Woods’ system not working with the players he has, or the players still trying to learn the system and gel as a unit, it needs to be corrected quickly. While the offense is good enough to outscore opponents on a weekly basis, the NFL is a league where any team can beat even the best team any given week.
While individuals continue to flash, like safety Grant Delpit playing in his NFL debut and defensive tackle Malik McDowell, the overall defense has a lot of work to do. If they don’t, there will likely be two big consequences. Joe Woods will likely be looking for another job, and the Browns will be looking at another disappointing season after starting with such high aspirations.