Most Cleveland Browns fans watching the Week 2 loss to the New York Jets will probably not be surprised by the latest Pro Football Focus statistic on cornerback Denzel Ward.
However, seeing it in print is still heart-wrenching.
PFF’s Grade For Ward Against Jets
Ward was among the worst-rated defensive players on Sunday.
PFF rated him at 33.5.
#Browns CB Denzel Ward graded out at a 33.5, which was the worst among players who played defensive snaps in yesterday’s game via @PFF.
— MoreForYouCleveland (@MoreForYou_CLE) September 19, 2022
We expect the biggest culprit for that rating is the 66-yard touchdown pass from Joe Flacco to Corey Davis where Ward was nowhere near Davis.
Ward Publicly Disagrees With PFF Rating
It is worth noting that Ward disagrees with PFF’s rating.
#Browns CB Denzel Ward said he disagrees with PFF's assessment that he gave up 100 yards yesterday. Said he was only targeted once.
— Ben Axelrod (@BenAxelrod) September 19, 2022
He says he was only targeted once but does not say which play that was.
Ward Addresses The Davis TD
This one isn't over yet! Corey Davis is WIDE OPEN and scores a 66 yard touchdown! #TakeFlight pic.twitter.com/5JLSERul6W
— Pro Football Culture (@proftblculture) September 18, 2022
Ward called the Davis TD a “miscommunication” but did not elaborate on who is to blame for it.
#Browns Denzel Ward on the Corey Davis touchdown yesterday:
It was another miscommunication, like the first game. We just need to get on the same page.
— Matt Fontana (@MattFontana83) September 19, 2022
Ward goes on to say that not everyone gets the call quickly, especially with crowd noise factored in.
He added that getting the plays/signals in during such situations is practiced.
Denzel Ward talks about the communication breakdown that led to the 66-yard touchdown pass to Corey Davis. Later in the interview he said he did not blow his assignment. He did not say who was at fault. #Browns pic.twitter.com/a2maY48KMz
— Jeff Schudel (@jsproinsider) September 19, 2022
Ward Responds To Fan On Social Media
Adding insult to injury is the fact that Ward apparently responds to a fan’s social media comment.
John Kosko tweeted a general statement about Ward; it was not directed to Ward specifically, and Ward was not tagged.
“Denzel Ward gave up over 100 yards in a game for the first time in his career, NFL and NCAA.”
lol I was only targeted one time yesterday. A lot of fake news out there. People don’t know what they don’t know🤷🏽♂️ https://t.co/APlsv9BXYn
— Denzel Ward (@denzelward) September 19, 2022
“lol I was only targeted one time yesterday. A lot of fake news out there. People don’t know what they don’t know.”
Ward giving a “lol” with a flippant remark after a painful loss on social media is not a good look for a guy who has been very buttoned up and focused in the first four years of his career.
It is time for the coaching staff to get this team under control regardless of whether it is a short week or not.
In Week 2, there should not be such loose behavior, on the field or off.
Coach White says
I saw this issue last year with this defensive coordinator and his play calling was suspect. This year is the same pattern in the last two games. Coach Woods your chess pieces are all out place. I thought you was to call schemes for a different play that the opposite team runs at. You can be aggressive and not blitz all the time. I have been a concern Browns fan. I’m a retired Defensive coordinator. I’m also a disabled veteran who wants to see everyone on the same sheet of music. Let take responsibility and get this problem fixed