Berea Report: Chud, Anderson a Good Match

From Berea, Fred Greetham provides an update on the Browns are they enter their bye week with a 3-3 record. Is RAC happy with the team's effort sort far. The is a resounding "kind of"...

BEREA - There was speculation during training camp that offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski preferred Derek Anderson over Charlie Frye to run his offense.

However, Frye won the preseason competition and lasted one half as the Browns starter.

Since Anderson took over as the starter, the Browns have averaged 32 points a game. He is 3-2 as the starter and has a QB rating of 89.0. Anderson has thrown for 14 touchdowns, while throwing eight interceptions. His completion percentage is 54.9 with 101-of-184 for 1,496 yards.

"The offense is putting points on the board and controlling the field," Romeo Crennel said. "I thought Derek Anderson had a good day. He took what the defense gave him and he made some plays. The offensive line protected him pretty well."

Against the Dolphins, Anderson was 18-of-25 for 245 yards with three touchdowns and more importantly, no interceptions. His QB rating was 142.5, the 11th highest for one game in Browns' history and best in 19 years.

Crennel said he's pleased with the decisions Anderson has made on the field, including throwing the ball away at the end of the first half when he couldn't find an open receiver.

"The maturity comes from experience," he said. "You learn from the experience you get."

The players think there are several factors that have led to the offensive production.

"It's a combination of a lot of things," Steve Heiden said. "Chud is very aggressive. All you have to do is look at the yards per catch average to see we're throwing the ball down the field.

"Also, the playmakers are making plays."

Kellen Winslow and Braylon Edwards are among the tops in the NFL in average yards per catch.

Anderson has been sacked six times in the six games he's played, comparing with Frye, who was sacked five times in one half.

Crennel said he's not surprised the way Anderson has played since taking over.

"It's played out the way it's played out," he said. "There was ‘good' Derek and ‘bad' Derek but he has shown improvement and he has shown the things you want to see from your quarterback. It's played out in good light, and hopefully, it will continue."

The play of Anderson has hushed the rush of Brady Quinn to the starting lineup. Many thought by the bye week, Quinn might be the starter and Crennel might be on his way out of town.

"I think he's playing with confidence," Heiden said. "I think he's always been a confident guy and it's apparent on the throws he's made."

Crennel was asked if the play of Anderson has made Crennel think about the obscure sixth-round quarterback who took over for the injured Drew Bledsoe while he was with the Patriots.

"If it continues, you could say that," Crennel said. "If he continues then at the end of the year you could make that statement. It's too early to say he is Tom Brady-like. I knew he was capable, but now he has the opportunity and he's made the most of it."

Notebook

Bye Goals: Crennel assessed the team heading into the bye week.

"We're 3-3 and have the bye coming up," he said. "We have 10 games left and six are on the road, so we're going to have to play better on the road.

"We're going to try to rest some guys and rehab some guys to get us in the best position for the rest of the season."

Crennel said he didn't want the players to feel that .500 is an acceptable record.

"3-3 isn't really that good," Crennel said. "It's .500. We want to do better in the 10-game stretch that we have left. If we can improve, then maybe we can have a winning season."

Jerome's Chance: RB Jerome Harrison averaged 7.1 yards per carry on eight carries for 57 yards. He also caught a pass for 15 yards. It was his first game not being inactive .

"Jerome Harrison came in and made some plays," Crennel said. "Sometimes, when you're inactive you don't think you have a spot on the team, but when you get the opportunity you have to produce. It also helps guys who are inactive so when the opportunity comes you can produce."

Injury Update: Crennel addressed a number of the players who have been out with longer-term injuries, including LeCharles Bentley and Gary Baxter.

"With LeCharles, we have six-week window," Crennel said. "He's been making some progress, but I don't think we're going to start him (practicing) this week."

On Baxter:

"He's making progress," he said. "We have to continue to work with him and at this time it seems to make sense to keep him on the active roster."

On Jamal Lewis:

"We think we'll have Jamal back by the next game," Crennel said. "We'll treat him and see where he is."

Injuries from Sunday's game were both ankle injuries with DB Kenny Wright and LB D'Qwell Jackson. Wright returned to the game and Jackson injured his ankle late and stayed in.

Tucker/Shaffer Shuffle: The Browns rotated Kevin Shaffer and Ryan Tucker at right tackle and Crennel said they might continue to do so. The Browns scored their last two touchdowns with Tucker in the lineup.

"They're both good players," Crennel said. "If it doesn't hurt us, we'll continue to do that."

 Tucker also kept a drive going with a fumble recovery from Kellen Winslow.

 


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