3 biggest Cleveland Browns scapegoats during terrible campaign
By Randy Gurzi
The Cleveland Browns have been a mess this season and these are the three biggest scapegoats for their failures through the first 11 weeks
The cold, hard truth about being a Cleveland Browns fan is the fact that we haven’t had a lot of talent to cheer for since 1999. That’s why so many in the Dawg Pound cling to Joe Thomas and Phil Dawson. Other fanbases have quarterbacks and great playmakers, we have a left tackle and kicker to call our heroes.
Due to this, players that do perform well are often unintentionally idolized. This happened when so many thought Duke Johnson was an elite talent simply because he was the best player on an 0-16 team. Or why Joe Schobert was practically worshiped for making tackles 10 yards downfield. We then saw when they joined other teams, they were role players or simply cut outright.
This season, those huge overvaluations are happening again. There have been countless players that have underperformed during this 3-7 start but they’re not getting near as much of the blame as these three scapegoats.
3 biggest Cleveland Browns scapegoats in 2022
3. Every defensive tackle
One slot into this countdown and there’s already been some rule-bending. Instead of picking one player at defensive tackle, the entire group is being lumped together — but that’s because every defensive tackle in Cleveland has been getting destroyed this year.
While it’s true each and every one of them has underperformed, not all of that is their fault. Much of the blame should fall on general manager Andrew Berry and defensive coordinator Joe Woods. These two built a roster full of pass-rushers and they’ve focused solely on getting after the quarterback.
This is a great strategy if you have an offense such as the Kansas City Chiefs that forces teams to pass in order to keep up. Or, if your defense has the ability to at least stop the run with their pass-rush-first linemen.
Right now, Cleveland has neither.
That means guys such as Taven Bryan, Jordan Elliott, and the rest are being put in a lose-lose situation. Again, they deserve plenty of criticism but they’re also not being properly utilized. Add in an early-down run stuffer, and this group could look vastly different if they could pin their ears back and get after the quarterback.