The Browns very well may have identified:
- A starting QB
- A future multiple Pro Bowl RB
- An answer to the Troy Polamalu's/Ed Reed's of the world in the secondary
- A lunchpail D that keeps them in most games
What they haven't identified is how to win consistently.
Bad teams do this.
Sorry, I know there's a lot of buzz in Browns Nation about wins over New Orleans and New England in successive weeks. Some point back to those victories like the drunk at the bar talking about how a knee injury kept him out of the pros.
The Browns are what they are.
3 and 7 and headed for another high draft pick.
I'll be the first to admit that there is hope and a positive buzz that hasn't existed for some time. I'll even give the offense, blessed with a plus 5 turnover ratio, a break on sputtering all afternoon because they were missing Josh Cribbs from the unit that doesn't brim with playmakers to begin with. I will even give the D a pass on arm tackling Maurice Jones-Drew because they were tired.
I will NOT, however, make excuses for the team's performance this year.
3-7 will not get you too far out of the basement in the AFC and that is where the Browns are closer to than they are the playoffs.
Could another offseason of injury healing, free agency and high drafting help to build on the developing nucleus of players I mentioned in the top of the article?
Sure. The future could be bright.
Right now, another frustrating "oh so close" loss leaves the present pretty bleak.