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Browns Bye Week Overview: Part 3

October 28, 2010
Jack Bacevice

First of all, let me pimp myself a little bit. Check out this article:
http://espn.go.com/blog/afcnorth/post/_/id/19553/thought-of-the-day-finale-browns-or-bengals
I'm Jack from Cleveland! It's almost like I'm a real writer!

Ok, seriously though. Let's take a look at the Browns receivers and tight ends through the first part of the season. It's been a tale of two positions really. The receivers struggles have been well documented. The tight ends have played well though.

Let's begin by praising the tight ends. Ben Watson leads the team in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns. In fact, Ben Watson is the only player who has receiving touchdowns. Meanwhile, Evan Moore has a touchdown of his own and leads the team in yards per reception with 22.4. That helps Moore to sit at third on the team in receiving yards despite having exactly one-third of the total receptions as Peyton Hillis, who is fourth in receiving yards on the team. Oh, and here's some more praise for the tight ends. The running game has been very effective this season. That's a part of the offense where the tight ends are integral. The goal line rushing, which often includes third tight end Robert Royal, has been extremely effective. An evaluation of this group is pretty simple. These guys are getting the job done week in and week out. Really this is one of the strongest positions on the team.

The wide receivers have been the polar opposite. Nominal number 1 WR Mohammad Massaquoi has just 9 catches in 5 games and 2 quarters. Nominal number 2 WR Brian Robiskie has been even worse with just 8 catches and an embarrassing 7.6 yards per reception. Eww. That being said, I think both of these guys (particularly Massaquoi) may benefit from a switch to Colt McCoy. Last week for the first time in (as far as I can remember) ever, Brian Robiskie led the team in receptions. Sure, Colt only threw the ball 16 times but Robiskie did catch one-third of the completions. I think the real beneficiary from a move to McCoy could be Massaquoi. Supposedly, Seneca Wallace isn't comfortable looking to Mohammad's side of the field. McCoy also appears to have the best vision when it comes to knowing where to go with the ball and hangs in the pocket best of the three quarterback (as a rookie!). The Patriots weakness has been their secondary and it is possible Massaquoi could get a breakout game on November 7th after two full weeks working with Colt.

Some of the receivers have actually received (pun totally intended) a bum rap. Josh Cribbs has managed 14 grabs for a shade over 13 yards per catch. Not great but respectable for a number 3 receiver. He also is the only wideout with two grabs of 20+ yards. (Conversely, the previously praised tight ends Watson and Moore have 5 catches of 20+ yards, each.) Chansi Stuckey is really getting it bad being lumped in with the failures of this group as a whole. Supposedly the number 4 receiver, Stuckey is 2nd on the team with 21 catches and 213 yards receiving. True, he has 0 TDs and averages a paltry 10.1 yards per catch. At the same time, he has come up with some really clutch plays. Stuckey has 14 first downs in 21 catches, second only to Watson's 18 first downs in 30 catches. Stuckey has a better ratio than Watson with 2/3rds of Stuckey's grabs going for first downs. Only Evan Moore has a better ratio on the team, with 7 of his 9 grabs going for first downs. The receivers have gotten a terrible rap, but if I had to grade them all, I'd give Massaquoi a D, Robiskie an F, Cribbs a B-, and Stuckey a B+. Assuming a standard grading scale that's a GPA of 1.75.

Okay, that's pretty terrible.

This group, particularly Massaquoi and Robiskie, really need to step it up in the 2nd half. At least one of the two has to step it up big time, then the other underachiever can be demoted. Regardless, the Browns need a lot more production from the receivers. This is sort of the wild card of the second half. If the Browns receiver can make a major improvement, it's very possible the team (and the team's record) will follow. Even a minor improvement might turn some of these close losses into close wins.

The tight ends have been great. The receivers have... not. Overall though, this is a progress report. The tight ends still need to keep doing what they are doing to secure an excellent season. The receivers are in trouble, but there is still time to salvage their school grades... er... year... um... I mean season. Whatever. Pick it up receivers.

1 comment:

  1. I think Robiskie should have some special plays directed toward him to help his confidence, I hate to see get cut and be a good reciever somewherelse.

    ReplyDelete