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Analyzing the Snap Counts in Browns vs. Giants (Defense)

Al Bello - Getty Images

The Browns' defense suffered injuries to DT Ahtyba Rubin, LB D'Qwell Jackson, and CB Dimitri Patterson against the New York Giants on Sunday. How did those injuries impact the snap count distribution for the defensive linemen, linebackers, and defensive backs? The snap count distributions for the Browns' defenders against the Giants are listed below. [Week 5 offensive snap counts for Cleveland can be found here]

Defensive Tackle
Ahtyba Rubin
Billy Winn John Hughes
Ishmaa'ily Kitchen
57/75 plays
45/75 plays
33/75 plays
15/75 plays

Ahtyba Rubin: 3 tackles, 2 assists (5 combined).
Billy Winn: 2 tackles (2 combined). 1 quarterback hit.
John Hughes: 2 tackles, 1 assist (3 combined).
Ishmaa'ily Kitchen: 1 tackle, 2 assists (3 combined).

Thoughts: The distribution for the defensive tackles was nearly identical to the previous game against the Ravens. Remember, Ahtyba Rubin did not suffer his injury until very late into the game, so he did not miss a lot of reps. I knew heading into the game that the Browns would have a tough time getting to Eli Manning, but the effort against the run was pretty discouraging.

Defensive End
Jabaal Sheard
Juqua Parker Frostee Rucker
Emmanuel Stephens
61/75 plays
38/75 plays
29/75 plays
22/75 plays

Jabaal Sheard: 3 tackles (3 combined).
Emmanuel Stephens: 2 tackles (2 combined).
Frostee Rucker:
1 tackle (1 combined).
Juqua Parker: No stats registered.

Thoughts: I was very surprised to see Frostee Rucker with his least amount of playing time this season. Rucker was brought in to help the Browns defend against the run, but Juqua Parker saw more action against the Giants. You have to wonder if Rucker is getting a bit irked; when the Browns first signed him, he said he wanted to come to Cleveland because he wouldn't have to be part of a rotation. Whatever happened to moving him to defensive tackle on some plays, too? The Browns' defensive ends couldn't do anything all game.

Kaluka Maiava Scott Fujita L.J. Fort
D'Qwell Jackson
Craig Robertson
40/75 plays
40/75 plays
38/75 plays
37/75 plays
34/75 plays

L.J. Fort: 5 tackles, 4 assists (9 combined).
Craig Robertson: 4 tackles, 2 assists (6 combined).
D'Qwell Jackson:
3 tackles, 2 assists (5 combined).
Scott Fujita: 4 tackles (4 combined).
Kaluka Maiava: 1 tackle, 1 assist (2 combined).

Thoughts: This was the first game in which D'Qwell Jackson missed snaps. He suffered a head injury, but early indications are that he may be ready to play against the Bengals next week. I'd need to go back and look at the tape, but the loss of Jackson seemed to be when Cleveland's run defense really fell apart. Remember, besides the fact that he makes plays, Jackson is also the leader of the defense -- the guy who makes sure everyone around him is doing their jobs. L.J. Fort stepped in for his most playing time since Week 1. James-Michael Johnson did not see a single snap on defense, despite being active for the first time all season.

Sheldon Brown Buster Skrine Dimitri Patterson
Trevin Wade
75/75 plays
57/75 plays
42/75 plays
11/75 plays

Buster Skrine: 6 tackles (6 combined). 3 passes defended.
Sheldon Brown: 4 tackles (4 combined). 1 pass defended, 1 fumble recovery.
Dimitri Patterson:
3 tackles (3 combined). 2 passes defended.
Trevin Wade: 1 tackle (1 combined).

Thoughts: It was mostly a down day for the secondary. I thought they had some great coverage on the Giants' receivers early on, but Eli Manning somehow just kept fitting it in to impossible spots. There were definitely some miscommunications/bad plays when Victor Cruz was pretty wide open for all three of his touchdown receptions. Sheldon Brown did have one pass defense that led to an interception. Dimitri Patterson was battling through an ankle injury for half the game, but couldn't take it anymore and had to leave the rest of the way.

T.J. Ward Usama Young
Eric Hagg
75/75 plays
75/75 plays
1/75 plays

Usama Young: 5 tackles, 5 assists (10 combined). 1 interception, 1 pass defended.
T.J. Ward:
2 tackles, 2 assists (4 combined).
Eric Hagg: No stats registered.
Ray Ventrone: No stats registered.

Thoughts: This is the first time all season that both of the Browns' starting safeties played on every down. Since Eric Hagg lost his job, Usama Young and Tashaun Gipson had been splitting reps 75/25 over the past two games. Perhaps to show just how little faith the staff has in Hagg, he didn't even get to split reps with Young; his one snap came with both Young and T.J. Ward still in the game. Young responded with his best statistical game of the season.

History of Snap Counts on Defense:

-Week 1: Philadelphia vs. Cleveland
-Week 2: Cleveland vs. Cincinnati
-Week 3: Buffalo vs. Cleveland
-Week 4: Cleveland vs. Baltimore