Another week, another heart-crushing loss for the Cleveland Browns.
This week that heartbreak came at the hands of the Baltimore Ravens, who edged out the Browns after a 61-yard Cade York field goal was blocked after a controversial false start pushed what would have been a 56-yard attempt back.
Despite the loss, there were positives that can be taken from this game for the Browns, a few of which came in the form of players.
Stud: Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah
Today, the defense breaks into the “studs” category first.
Second-year linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah made a huge play late in the fourth quarter to give the Browns’ offense a chance when he forced a Justice Hill fumble.
JOK came from Hill’s right side and punched the ball out when the Ravens were in the red zone, looking like they would put the game away with a long touchdown drive to sink the Browns to 2-5.
Picture-perfect punch out by former Notre Dame linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah. pic.twitter.com/nPASic988P
— Tyler Horka (@tbhorka) October 23, 2022
Overall, Owusu-Koramoah and the defense played their best game to date, holding the Ravens’ offense to only 23 points, but the offense and officiating let Cleveland down.
As fans, it is easy to blame the officials for any and every loss that your team may suffer, but this one was different.
To start, Browns quarterback Jacoby Brissett laid a beautiful pass up to Amari Cooper for a long touchdown late in the fourth to give the Browns a 26-23 lead. That is until the official threw a flag for offensive pass interference, wiping the touchdown off the board and forcing the Browns into a long field goal.
Amari Cooper has a touchdown pass wiped away with an incredibly weak OPI call! 😤
— BROWNS OR DIE 💀 (@BrownsorDie) October 23, 2022
However, this phantom PI wasn’t the end of the poor officiating.
Only one play later, the officials called Cleveland for a false start that could at best be described as dicey.
Video of the “false start” on the Browns. Zero movement, bad call pic.twitter.com/Og8o3AEteD
— Jared Mueller (@JaredKMueller) October 23, 2022
It appeared as if Baltimore’s Calais Campbell jumped offsides, but the officials deemed the penalty to be on Michael Dunn of the Browns.
One could easily say the officials stole this game from the Browns, and personally, I wouldn’t say they would be wrong.
Stud: Nick Chubb
Nick Chubb was once again the Browns’ most potent offensive weapon.
Even on a day that fell below Chubb’s usual marks, (16 rushes, 91 yards, 1 TD), he was clearly the best player on the field whenever he was on it.
Chubb looked like a man possessed at times on Sunday, breaking tackles left and right, and establishing the kind of ground-and-pound style that Cleveland wants to play.
.@NickChubb breaking tackles left and right 😤
— NFL STREAMS REDDIT (@nflstreamshdnow) October 23, 2022
Chubb continues to establish himself as the NFL’s best running back, and as long as the Browns are able to establish him, they have a chance in almost any game.
Dud: The DTs… again
In their defense, today was the first time I have seen a Browns’ defensive tackle make a good play all season, as Taven Bryan did record a sack tonight.
But once again, the opposing team was able to run up the middle at will with whoever they wanted.
Whether it was Lamar Jackson or Gus Edwards, the Ravens ran up the middle of the defense at will.
Hopefully, the soon-to-be active Tyeler Davison can make an impact in the middle of the Cleveland defense, or else the Browns will struggle to stop the run all year long.