Offensive deep throws trumped by defensive woes: Lions 38, Browns 37

Kirk LammersContributor INovember 22, 2009

Photo: John Kuntz/

Today, Brady Quinn threw for 304 yards and 4 touchdowns, the Browns amassed 439 total yards, they converted 10-of-19 third downs, converted 2-of-2 fourth downs, did not turn the ball over, controlled the ball for nearly 35 minutes, and the Browns jumped out to a 24-3 lead in the first quarter on the way to their second victory of the season. It sounds great, doesn't it?

The only problem is the Browns didn't win, and that defense that I so greatly praised not six days ago is the main culprit. Number one draft pick Matthew Stafford threw for 422 yards and 5 touchdowns, 1 of them with 1 arm as time expired (more on that later) as the Lions piled up 473 total yards and marched down the field in less than two minutes with two timeouts, crushing the Browns and outscoring them 35-11 in the last three quarters.

Surprise inactives: Today, the Browns did not dress LB David Veikune, WR Brian Robiskie, and RB Jerome Harrison. While Harrison, especially with his whiny comments this past week, does not surprise me, I'm disappointed that Robo and Veikune were left off the active list. To have two of your top four draft picks (both of them second round picks) left off your gameday roster due to ability is not a vote of confidence for the Browns' drafting skills. Even more than that, it's the simple fact that this season is lost, and the Browns need to see what they have in Veikune and Robiskie. Chris Jennings was the backup running back and got 15 touches today, and perhaps it was better to have him active and leave Harrison inactive.