Trotter: Browns "Should Probably Be 0-6"

The Browns have been disappointing, Jake Trotter says, but the fact that they even have two wins is "kind of remarkable"

Reiter Than You
October 14, 2019 - 8:45 pm
Freddie Kitchens Browns

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Well, the honeymoon period is officially over for the Cleveland Browns, the darlings of the NFL offseason. The Browns, a team expected to win the AFC North, have lost three of their last four games and are 2-4 on the season.

Who deserves blame for this?

“There are plenty of people to assign blame, but to me, when I look at penalties and a team that’s undisciplined, that has to fall with the head coach,” ESPN's Jake Trotter said on Reiter Than You. “If you’re unfocused as a team, if you’re committing too many penalties as a team – and the thing about the Browns are it’s not like one area; it’s not like receiver, running back or offensive line or the secondary or special teams. Literally evert facet of the game has contributed to the penalty barrage.

“So I think you have to start with Freddie Kitchens,” Trotter continued. “The play-calling for Baker has been a little bit uneven. Through the first month of the season, they were going from one identity to the next. In other words, they didn’t have any identity. I think that they maybe turned a little bit of a corner in some ways offensively against Seattle, but again, not good enough.”

Mayfield has struggled mightily this season. He’s completed 56.6 percent of his passes for 1,496 yards, five touchdowns and 11 interceptions.

“He’s not playing his best ball, to be sure,” Trotter said. “He’s also not getting a lot of help from his offensive teammates. It’s so many things that are adding up to a team that is just not very good.” 

The Browns are among the league leaders in penalties, penalty yards, interceptions and red zone turnovers.

“When you are shooting yourself in the foot to the extent the Browns are, you can’t win games,” Trotter said. “Honestly, if you look at all those categories, if you’re going to lead the league in interceptions and penalties, you should probably be 0-6. The fact that they even have two wins is kind of remarkable considering all the mistakes that they’ve made. They’re not going anywhere until they clean all of that up. Baker’s got to play better for sure, but even if he does play better—if they continue to commit penalties at the rate that they are and turn the ball over at the rate that they are—they’re going to miss the playoffs. They’re going to go something like 5-11, and it’s going to be among the most disappointing seasons in the NFL.”