The Cleveland Browns dropped another winnable game Sunday afternoon as they fell to the St. Louis Rams by a final score of 13-12. Cleveland failed to score a touchdown despite driving the ball with 1st-and-goal to go inside five minutes left in the fourth quarter. After a botched field goal attempt by Phil Dawson, the Rams simply needed one first down to seal the victory, which they promptly received with two minutes left in the game.
Now, Cleveland fans are used to losing close games like this, as history has clearly not been on their side since 1999.
But the way in which the Browns have been losing games throughout the 2011 season can only be blamed on one person.
Pat Shurmur was hired by the Browns to be an offensive guru who could groom Cleveland's young quarterback into a consistent winner. Shurmur has not delivered on all of the preseason optimism and actually seems to have the offense regressing from where they were at the end of the 2010 season. Cleveland has failed to score a touchdown in two games throughout the 2011 campaign and have only scored more than 20 points on one occasion.
The play-calling system Shurmur has in place for the Browns' offense is questionable to say the least. He has consistently taken the ball out of Colt McCoy's hands in big situations while the running game has continued to disappoint since Week 2. Shurmur has also failed to get any type of production out of his young receivers and even went as far as to place Seneca Wallace at the wideout position in Sunday's loss.
Shurmur and Mike Holmgren have already indicated that they will likely hire an offensive coordinator before the 2012-2013 season begins. But Shurmur has already shown he is completely inept when it comes to offensive game-planning, and it is expected he will not want to relinquish play-calling duties to a coordinator.
This Browns team needs to make changes all around in order to win any more games this season. The fact of the matter is that Cleveland does not have the players, coaches or management to be a good NFL team at this point in their progression. Fans and experts will all have their opinions on whether or not Shurmur is the right man for this job, but Cleveland fans are beginning to get very irritated with the way this team is being managed.