PASSING OFFENSE: C -- Tim Couch got off to a great start in the first half, with two touchdown passes. Cincinnati was playing a lot of man in those two periods, and the Browns took advantage. In the second half, though, the Bengals started blitzing and playing "Cover-2," and the Browns had few answers. And when they did have answers, receivers dropped passes or penalties were called.
RUSHING OFFENSE: D -- William Green again was no factor -- for the
fourth game in a row. The Browns have not run the ball against anyone, and it's
a problem. Green started the same way in 2002, but the Browns re-committed to
the run and got things going. If they don't do something soon, this season could
be washed down the drain.
PASS DEFENSE: F -- Since when is Jon Kitna an All-Pro? Kitna played that way Sunday, calmly completing key passes at key times. His biggest was a 55-yard touchdown to Chad Johnson late in the first half, but he also set up another score by drawing a pass interference penalty on Daylon McCutcheon in the end zone. The Browns never got close to Kitna, and rarely blitzed him. As good as the secondary looked against San Francisco, it looked that bad against Cincinnati.
RUSH DEFENSE: D-minus -- The best defense the Browns played against the run was to watch Corey Dillon leave the game with a groin injury. Still, his backup Rudi Johnson had more yards (51) and a better average (3.4) than Cleveland's William Green had. This was not a good day for the Browns' defensive line.
SPECIAL TEAMS: D -- Dennis Northcutt had some good returns, but a key penalty on rookie Chris Crocker just before the Browns' last drive cost the team 20 yards of prime field position. Too, Phil Dawson missed a field goal when Ryan Pontbriand's snap was low and had to be spun before being put down. It was the rookie's first bad snap since he was a surprise fifth-round draft pick.
COACHING: D -- How does a team come off an uplifting game in San Francisco and play poorly against Cincinnati? The team's inability to win at home is a large problem that Butch Davis must confront. He also has to get his team together or this season could spiral out of control quickly. Especially since the schedule has the team going to Pittsburgh and playing Oakland at home the next two weeks.