BEREA—The Browns have a better offense than the Broncos.
That sounds more like a joke than a statement, but it’s true—at least currently based on statistics.
Through five weeks, the Browns offense is ranked eighth overall in the NFL averaging 377.4 yards a game. The Browns passing attack is sixth averaging 289 yards per game and are 13th in the NFL in scoring, averaging 23.6 points per game.
In the last three weeks, the Browns are averaging 26.7 points per game.
In contrast, Peyton Manning, Demaryius Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders and company are ranked 30th (30th rushing, passing 23) in the NFL offensively, averaging 231 yards per game passing. The Broncos are averaging 22.6 points a game (17th) overall The Broncos are 5-0 largely because of their top ranked defensive.
Josh McCown is the 8th-rated quarterback in the NFL with a rating of 102.8, while first ballot Hall of Famer Manning is 30th at 77.3 just behind rookie Jameis Winston, Nick Foles and Ryan Fitzpatrick. McCown was named the Offensive Player of the week for his performance in the 33-30 overtime win at Baltimore. McCown completed 36-of-51 passes for a career-high and Browns single-game record 457 passing yards with two touchdowns, zero interceptions and a 111.3 rating. He added 12 rushing yards and a rushing touchdown.
leveland earned its first victory in Baltimore since 2007 as the Browns improved to 1-0 in AFC North divisional play for the first time since 2004. The Browns totaled 505 yards of total offense, their most in a game since 2007.
McCown became the first player in Browns history to throw for 300 yards in three consecutive games. His 457 passing yards are the second-highest by an NFL player this season and his 36 completions tied for the second-most in Browns history. His 1,154 passing yards over the past three weeks leads the NFL during that span and is a Browns three-game record. The 13-year veteran is tied for the NFL lead with three 300-yard passing games this season and is second in the league with a 123.2 rating on third down.
McCown was the first Browns player to be named Offensive Player of the Week since QB Jason Campbell in Week 9 in 2013.
A lot of the credit for the rise in the Browns offense has to go to offensive coordinator John DeFilippo, who in his first year as an NFL coordinator has had to adapt to two different quarterbacks in the first five games and dealing with having little success in the rushing game. The Browns are 28th in rushing offense, averaging just 88.4 yards a game.
“Obviously, I think the strides that we’ve taken offensively the last few weeks from training camp until now speaks a great deal about his ability to coordinate a group and bring people together,” McCown said about DeFilippo. “He’s done a great job. Like I said last week, I feel him getting better every week and doing a good job of adapting really to what the game needs as far as where we’re at offensively but does a good job of staying calm and working through the call sheet and trusting his preparation. That’s been huge for us, obviously.”
Mike Pettine gives a lot of the credit of the recent success to DeFilippo.
“To me, the one thing I learned about him very quickly when I hired him was that it is a combination of passion and football intelligence,” he said. “He sees the game, and when a play breaks down, he knows immediately why it happened. He is very good at troubleshooting and very good at understanding defenses and what they are trying to take away and how to take advantage of it and how we can get our guys in the right position to make plays.”
Haden, Gipson, Solomon, Robertson Miss: Four players sat out Wednesday’s practice. DB Joe Haden (concussion), DB Tashaun Gipson (ankle), LB Craig Robertson (ankle) and LB Scott Solomon (knee).
Haden is still in the NFL’s concussion protocol after hitting his head on the ground against the Ravens. Solomon injured his knee during the game in his first action since the season opener. Robertson was on the stationary bike during the early portion of Wednesday’s practice. Pettine is hopeful that Gipson will be able to play Sunday after missing last week’s game.
“It’s too early to tell if Gipson will play,” Pettine said. Several other players were limited or listed on the injury report, including DL Desmond Bryant (shoulder), RB Isaiah Crowell (toe), LB Karlos Dansby ( RB Shaun Draughn (back), DB Tashaun Gipson (ankle), DB Joe Haden (concussion), (WR Brian Hartline (thigh), QB Johnny Manziel (right elbow). QB Josh McCown (ankle), LB Craig Robertson (ankle), OL Mitchell Schwartz (thumb), LB Scott Solomon (knee) and RB Robert Turbin (ankle).