Browns Passing at Record Pace

The number of passes thrown by Dilfer challenging team record...

Trent Dilfer threw 30 passes for the Browns against Baltimore. That continues a trend that has Dilfer averaging 33.6 passes per game this season.

At this pace, Dilfer will throw 538 passes -- which puts him in the area of the team's all-time record of 567 passes set by Brian Sipe.

Sipe played in the Browns' "Kardiac Kids" era, though, and Dilfer is playing at a time when the Browns are trying to re-establish themselves.

In Sunday's loss to the Ravens, the Browns didn't run the ball once in the first period.

The Browns pulled a win out against Chicago by stressing the pass, but Dilfer has never been a quarterback who has carried a team.

When his teams have won, Dilfer has played a complementary role -- doing his part along with the running game and defense.

With a revamped offensive line and Reuben Droughns running well, the Browns can run the ball. If they want to win more games this season, it might be time to re-assess the offensive emphasis.
 

BROWNS GRADES VS. RAVENS

PASSING OFFENSE: D -- The Browns did not come up with the big play they needed to beat the Ravens -- unlike a week earlier against the Bears. One reason was Trent Dilfer struggled, another was the Ravens pressured him relentlessly. Four sacks led to a fumble, a tipped pass led to an interception and a botched snap led to another turnover.

RUSHING OFFENSE: C -- Reuben Droughns averaged just less than four yards per carry, but he didn't get the ball enough. Droughns' 15 carries were too few. It's not a stretch to think Droughns' per carry average would have increased had he run the ball more.

PASS DEFENSE: B -- There were times that Anthony Wright looked comfortable and threw well. The Browns did little to disrupt him in the first half. But in the second half, the Browns did a little more to disrupt his rhythm. Wright looked much more pedestrian, and the only touchdown the Ravens got was when they recovered a fumble at the Browns 20-yard-line.

RUSH DEFENSE: D -- This aspect of the team remains a large problem. The Browns have yet to hold a team under 100 yards rushing. The Ravens had 150. The only positive was that the Browns stopped Jamal Lewis (24 carries, 59 yards), but Chester Taylor broke a 52-yarder en route to a 92-yard day. Until the Browns consistently stop the other team's running game, they will struggle to win.

SPECIAL TEAMS: D-minus -- A 51-yard punt return set up a Ravens field goal and helped Baltimore keep early momentum. Late in the game when the Browns needed some kind of spark, special teams penalties kept setting them back. Two were on Sean Jones and one was on Michael Lehan.

COACHING: D -- Romeo Crennel said everybody had a bad day -- players and coaches. He was right. The offensive plan relied too much on the pass and didn't utilize Reuben Droughns enough. Defensively, the Browns didn't blitz Anthony Wright enough. Wright had struggled against the blitz in past games, but the Browns rarely blitzed him. This game marked the first time this season the team didn't seem properly prepared.
 


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