The Cleveland Browns defense is not good. It has been quite terrible most of the year especially compared to come of the competition it has played against. None of that is deniable or debatable.
What has been debated, quite strongly, is who or what is the problem. Is it just the bad defensive tackle group? Is it injuries keeping key players out of most games? Is it Joe Woods’ system and decisions? Is it the loss of LB Anthony Walker Jr.?
In the end, like most problems, the answer is probably a combination of many things. The coaches need to make better decisions, the players need to stay disciplined and make the plays they can make and the offense needs to keep them off the field as much as possible by not turning the ball over.
One of the many players struggling this season is S Grant Delpit. After missing his entire rookie season due to an Achilles injury, Delpit showed some flashes of good play late last year. As a blitzer, a run defender and in coverage, the LSU product showed the upside that made him a second-round pick that many thought would go in the first round.
In 2022, Delpit’s play has fallen off a cliff in all phases of the game. He is often out of position as a run defender but in coverage it may be worse. Quarterbacks love throwing the ball to whoever is Delpit’s responsibility:
Quarterbacks have a passer rating of 130.2 when targeting #Browns FS Grant Delpit.— Marcus Mosher (@Marcus_Mosher) October 18, 2022
He's been awful in coverage this season.
For reference, the highest passer rating possible is 158.3. No quarterback has ever had a passer rating for a season higher than 122.5.
In Week 6, Delpit was in man coverage versus TE Hunter Henry when Henry ended up wide open for a touchdown. The safety fell down trying to get physical at the line of scrimmage leaving Henry an easy score.
On defense, much like on the offensive line, you are only as good as your weakest link. Unfortunately for Cleveland’s defense, they have had more than one weak link but Delpit in coverage stands out like a bright green light for opposing quarterbacks.
Are you surprised by how high the passer rating is against Delpit?