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Browns’ defensive snap counts, stats, and PFF notes: Week 15

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Where Ben Watson gets free clearance to the end zone.

Baltimore Ravens v Cleveland Browns
Good thing Peppers was 40 yards back so he could be here in time to make this tackle in the end zone.
Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

Below, we analyze the snap counts and stats on defense for the Cleveland Browns' Week 15 game against the Baltimore Ravens.

Defensive Line

Pos Player Plays % Stats
Pos Player Plays % Stats
DL Trevon Coley 61 78% 2 tackles, 1 assist (3 combined). 1 sack, 1 TFL, 1 QH.
DL Myles Garrett 56 72% 1 tackle, 1 assist (2 combined). 1 pass defended.
DL Carl Nassib 45 58% 1 tackle, 1 assist (2 combined). 1 QH, a pass defended.
DL Danny Shelton 37 47% 1 tackle (1 combined).
DL Larry Ogunjobi 29 37% 3 tackles, 1 assist (4 combined).
DL Nate Orchard 23 29% 1 assist (1 combined).
DL Lavar Edwards 21 27% 1 assist (1 combined).
DL Caleb Brantley 19 24% 3 tackles (3 combined).
  • After getting rid of Tyrone Holmes and T.Y. McGill, John Dorsey signed veteran defensive end Lavar Edwards. Edwards ended up playing 21 snaps.
  • Danny Shelton, returning from injury, played almost half the game.
  • Per PFF, Myles Garrett graded out to an 82.9 and registered 5 of the Browns’ 14 pressures as a team, and also had a batted pass. PFF also gives credit to Carl Nassib for logging 3 run stops.

Linebacker

Pos Player Plays % Stats
Pos Player Plays % Stats
LB Christian Kirksey 78 100% 7 tackles, 6 assists (13 combined). 1 pass defended.
LB Joe Schobert 78 100% 2 tackles, 3 assists (5 combined). 1 pass defended.
LB James Burgess 78 100% 5 tackles, 1 assist (6 combined). 2 TFL.
LB B.J. Bello 21 27% 1 QH.
  • I think this is the first time all season that all three starting linebackers played 100% of the snaps.
  • PFF says that Joe Schobert only allowed 2 catches for 19 yards. When attacking the middle of the field, though, Joe Flacco was productive just as all other quarterbacks have been against Cleveland.

QB Joe Flacco found a home across the middle of the field on Sunday, a popular and productive strategy for Browns’ opponents this year. Flacco was 18-of-25 for 208 yards when targeting the middle of the field with a passer rating of 110.1. For the year, the Browns have given up 14 touchdowns on targets over the middle and made just two interceptions, allowing a passer rating of 118.9.

Cornerback

Pos Player Plays % Stats
Pos Player Plays % Stats
CB Jason McCourty 75 96% 3 tackles, 1 assist (4 combined). 1 pass defended.
CB Mike Jordan 75 96% 5 tackles, 3 assists (8 combined).
CB C.J. Smith 9 12% 1 tackle (1 combined).
  • With Jamar Taylor and Briean Boddy-Calhoun out, the team started Mike Jordan and hardly played a nickelback (although we noted that the Browns wouldn’t need a nickelback much against the Ravens). Against a depleted Ravens receiving group, the corners didn’t play aggressive, though (that is more of a coaches decision again).

Safety

Pos Player Plays % Stats
Pos Player Plays % Stats
S Jabrill Peppers 75 96% 5 tackles, 1 assist (6 combined).
S Derrick Kindred 62 79% 2 tackles, 1 assist (3 combined).
S Kai Nacua 14 18% 1 tackle (1 combined).
S Derron Smith 2 3% No stats registered.
  • PFF notes that Jabrill Peppers lined up within eight yards of the line of scrimmage on 23 of 628 total defensive snaps this season, and 9 of those snaps came against the Ravens. So he was definitely closer than he’s been all season, but it’s still not much.
  • I remember one incomplete pass in the game from Flacco that was about 20-25 yards over the middle. A defender was there, and the pass was low. I then panned my head 15-20 yards further downfield and saw Peppers standing there after the play, completely out of the mix. No chance of impacting any play. Ridiculous.

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The Browns’ defense has done some good things this year, but they are now playing without four starters on defense. The frustrating thing was that Flacco is often careless with the ball, and I felt he was like that on Sunday too. Cleveland couldn’t capitalize. I think the Browns have gone four straight games without forcing a turnover too.