3 Adjustments Cleveland Browns must make during the bye

Nov 21, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski rects to a call during the second half at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 21, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski rects to a call during the second half at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /
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Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) meets with Cleveland Browns offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt, center, and Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski during the first half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans, Sunday, Sept. 19, 2021, in Cleveland, Ohio. [Jeff Lange/Beacon Journal] /
The Cleveland Browns limped into the bye week after losing to the Baltimore Ravens. What adjustments will they make to get back on track? Find out here.

The Cleveland Browns have taken the city on a roller coaster ride. It has been a season of ups and downs. The offense is spectacular one week, then garbage the next. The same is true of the defense.

Cleveland has even taken the city through the scary drops and loops. The Browns have played with an obviously injured quarterback. Why they keep trotting quarterback Baker Mayfield out there is a serious question. The Odell Beckham Jr. loop de loop ended with a crash and burn. Say what you will about him, the offense has not been the same since he left.

The roller coaster ride needs to end. The city and the fans deserve better than an inconsistent team unable to find their identity. Here are some ways the team resolve some of the issues.

Cleveland Browns must run different Constraint Plays

There has been much ado about nothing due to the Browns personnel choices. There are those who argue the Browns should run less 13 personnel. 13 personnel consists of one running back and three tight ends. Reality is that 13 personnel puts the Browns best players on the field. Those players give you the best chance to win. The Browns should continue to run 13 personnel.

One problem with the Browns offense this season has been the usage of personnel. The number of backs vs tight ends vs receivers on the field does not matter. It is who is on the field for specific plays that is the issue.

Case in point, the first run of the game last week saw Baltimore Ravens linebacker Patrick Queen perfectly time a run blitz through the A gap making the play in the backfield. How did this happen? Easy, he knew the Browns tendencies with the personnel combined with formation combined with motion to know exactly what the play was going to be.

Further, even the casual fan can recognize that when running back Demetric Felton is in the game, the play will be a pass 90 percent of the time. When it is 13 personnel with running back Nick Chubb standing upright eight-yards back, the play is most likely a wide zone with an occasional play action designed to keep the defense honest.

Defenses have figured out that if you load the box then run blitz against certain formations, the run will be stopped or the play action will fail due to the pressure in Baker’s face. It’s time head coach Kevin Stefanski to steal some constraint plays from his former mentor Minnesota Vikings Offensive Coordinator Mike Shanahan or his son, San Francisco 49ers Head Coach Kyle Shanahan.

A constraint play is a play designed to prevent defenses from over playing a certain formation, play type (run or pass) or personnel grouping. In both Shanahan’s offenses there are plays run out of 13 personnel under center that are quick passes targeting areas where teams are blitzing from.

Right now the Browns are not running any of them. They have a limited number of plays out of 13 personnel and defenses know exactly what they are and when they will be run. Without mixing in some different constraint plays, the Browns offense will continue to sputter.

The Browns have another adjustment they can make out of 13 personnel. They need to mix up the personnel within the group.