The Cleveland Browns are once again the worst team in the NFL.
Their record may not indicate it, but that's exactly where the Browns are following a disappointing and somewhat humiliating home loss to the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday. Cleveland does not, right now today, have a healthy starting NFL quarterback, and the defense was taken to school on two pivotal drives by an offense that is one of the worst in the league. I don't believe there is a single team that the Browns could right now defeat.
Happy holidays, Cleveland sports fans.
Sober thoughts on Browns losing to Jaguars: Leadership
Cleveland defensive back Joe Haden was burned for the second straight week, this time on what was the biggest play of the afternoon. Haden was in tears while addressing reporters following the game, and he dropped multiple profanities while taking responsibility for Cleveland's loss. He again stepped up on Monday, facing the press and making no excuses for what was a very costly miscue.
Haden cannot, of course, continue on in this manner every Monday. He's going to have to make the big plays if he is to be considered to be a true shutdown cornerback. With that said, Cleveland fans have to love the way that Haden has handled himself over the past couple of weeks.
Haden's emotional reactions show more than just a player who is tired of losing. His admitting fault and taking the blame was an example of real leadership, something the Browns desperately need as the season continues to crumble apart. It's now on Haden to put the past in the past and move forward.
Sober thoughts on Browns losing to Jaguars: The future?
Josh Gordon has emerged as a true star, arguably the second-best wide receiver in the game behind only Calvin Johnson. Just as impressive as are his stats is the fact that conversations about Gordon potentially “taking plays off” in games have disappeared. He certainly couldn't be blamed for phoning it in at times considering how poorly the Browns are playing at the moment.
I am left wondering, however, what will happen regarding Gordon this winter. His current deal aside, Gordon deserves to get paid this coming winter, and he and fellow young stars such as Haden and T.J. Ward also deserve to play for a winner. Do not at all be shocked if more than one team approaches the Browns about Gordon, who was reportedly on the trade block in October.
Would Cleveland pull the trigger on another monster trade this offseason if presented with the right deal?
Sober thoughts on Browns losing to Jaguars: Now what?
There is, as depressing as it might be to point out, little positive to say about the Browns looking at the final four games on their schedule. Tom Brady could go for 500 yards when the New England Patriots host Cleveland this coming Sunday. The Chicago Bears are still fighting for their playoff lives. Sure, the New York Jets are a disaster, but I still can't see the Browns winning at MetLife Stadium three days before Christmas. Not a part of me believes the Browns are beating the Steelers in Pittsburgh on the final day of the season.
The Browns are apparently so impressed with QB Alex Tanney, signed by the team last Tuesday, that head coach Rob Chudzinski told reporters on Monday that he isn't yet against the idea of starting a quarterback not currently on the roster when Cleveland faces off with New England. This team's defense is not nearly as good as many, myself included, believed it to be. I'm not convinced the Browns aren't worse off than they were 12 months ago.