4 Cleveland Browns to blame for loss to the Rams in Week 13

The Cleveland Browns were handed their fifth loss of the season against the Rams, and these four players deserve some of the blame

Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns / Harry How/GettyImages
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Cleveland Browns cornerback, Martin Emerson

Ever since being selected in the third round of the 2022 NFL Draft, Martin Emerson has been a very good player for the Browns. He was one of the better rookie defensive backs in the league last year and has continued to perform well this season. Unfortunately, he didn't have his best game on Sunday.

With Denzel Ward out due to a shoulder injury, the Browns have been asking for more from Emerson and Greg Newsome. Last week, Newsome was beaten on several plays including a long pass interference call on a scoring drive. This weekend, it was Emerson who was hit with the flag that put the opponent in scoring range.

Near the end of the first quarter, Emerson was lined up across from Tutu Atwell, who isn't a great matchup for the physical Emerson. Atwell, who is 5-foot-9 and 165 pounds, is an absolute burner and used that speed to get past Emerson. Mathew Stafford aired one out for him and Emerson panicked as he ran right into Atwell and tackled him before the ball arrived.

That was a 41-yard penalty and while the Rams didn't score thanks to a missed field goal, Emerson probably could have made a play on the ball. The throw was short and had Emerson turned his head, he would have been in a position to potentially take it away — or at least knock it down. Since he didn't, the Rams moved to the Cleveland 28 and could have taken a larger lead.

He made some stops from there but overall, the secondary gave up far too many plays. Puka Nacua had 105 yards and a touchdown and Cooper Kupp had 39 on six receptions with another touchdown. Again, the corners were asked to step up and again, they fell short without Ward.