The Cleveland Browns have presented a strange combination this NFL season. While they stand at 1-2 in the AFC North, they are nonetheless in 3rd place and handed the Minnesota Vikings their third loss in a row on Sunday. The Browns are showing some promise with this first win of the season.
Browns fans are among the most loyal in the league, having seen their team rise to greatness and fall to the lowest lows. They even moved away and reincarnated as the Baltimore Ravens in the mid-90s. Nothing, it seems, can shake the devotion of a Browns fan, not even consecutive losing seasons.
Known as a scrappy, never-quit squad, the Browns started the year losing to the Miami Dolphins (23-10) and the Baltimore Ravens ( 6-14). However, third string quarterback Brandon Hoyer showed excellent poise and precision in his start. While he does not possess fellow quarterback Brandon Weedon’s arm strength, he is well aware of his limitations, and worked within them to deliver strikes down field, taking advantage of holes in the Vikings’ coverage scheme.
Hoyer’s performance was “good enough” but far from perfect. He completed only 56% of his passes and threw three interceptions, two of which were misreads of Minnesota’s zone coverage. The third was tipped at the line of scrimmage. He is however, quite accurate and his speed of release helped get the Browns ahead and hold on to the score to finish the game with their first win of the season. To his advantage, he had wide receiver Josh Gordon at his disposal. Gordon was absent from the lineup during Weedon’s two weeks at the helm, but showed his worth on Sunday as he scored one of the Browns’ five touchdowns of the season.
In the NFL’s topsy turvy 2013 season, the Browns finally clawed their way into the win column. They are scheduled to face the Cincinnati Bengals at home on Sunday Sept. 29, and the fans will, as usual be on hand to cheer their team on. With the first win of the year under their belt, the Cleveland Browns are beginning to show signs of a promising season.
Written By: Brandi Tasby