When the Cleveland Browns brokered an in-season trade, sending Trent Richardson to the Indianapolis Colts for a first-round pick, most felt they were already giving up on the year.
Brian Hoyer didn’t get the memo, as the third-string quarterback directed the Browns to a 31-27 victory over the Minnesota Vikings this past weekend.
So, will the Browns be competing for a division title this year?
Yes they are.
The biggest problem the opposing teams are going to face is a lack of time to prepare for what Cleveland throws at them.
Is Hoyer going to remain the starter? Maybe.
Is Brandon Weeden going to return and play? He could.
Will the Browns bring in some other random player to direct the offense? They should might.
You just don’t really know what to expect from Cleveland over these next couple of months.
They are already fielding offers from other young players like Josh Gordon, who had an incredible performance with Hoyer and likely forced the hand of several other teams looking to upgrade their wide receiver position.
Cleveland has talented.
Joe Thomas is a multi-time All-Pro tackle.
Jordan Cameron is an emerging playmaker at tight end.
The defense features standouts like Joe Haden, Paul Kruger and Phillip Taylor.
Oh, and let’s not forget all the picks that the Browns are going to amass – and have already picked up – heading into what is looking like a very deep, very talented NFL Draft next spring.
Speaking of “What the heck is going on things?” Have you looked at the NFC this week?
Shoot, even without Richardson, Cleveland is currently a game ahead of winless Pittsburgh in the standings, so that has to give the die-hard and loyal Brown faithful something to cheer about for now.
The Niners lost to the Colts at home.
The Falcons were beat by Miami on the road.
And the Panthers kept the Giants winless with a nasty 38-0 beatdown.
Prior to the start of the season, a short-list of Super Bowl contenders from this conference would have included Seattle, Washington, New York, San Francisco, Green Bay and Atlanta among a few others.
Outside of the unbeaten Seahawks, those teams have a combined 3-12 record. Three wins! THREE WINS!
And one of those came when the Niners beat the Packers.
I understand that it is early, but this just goes to show that the landscape in the NFL is ever-changing.
Well, ever-changing unless you have someone like Drew Brees, who just doesn’t seem to miss a beat – especially now that he has his head coach Sean Payton back in the fold after a year-long banishment.
Quietly, the Saints are 3-0 and scoring points in bunches. And that defense, that defense that led to all those sanctions and suspensions in “Bounty-Gate.” Well, they are doing their job and more, allowing just over 10 points per game.
Oh, and that RGIII fella in the nation’s capitol, he is finding out that preseason is pretty important right about now wouldn’t you say ‘Skins fans?