Unlike fans, Hue Jackson isn’t going to overreact to 1 preseason game.
That’s not to say his film review of the 17-11 loss at Green Bay did not raise a few red flags but it wasn’t all bad. First, operationally, everything went smooth. That in and of itself compared to previous coaching staffs – during regular season games – is progress.
As for the areas of concern, nothing good coaching can’t fix.
“The good thing there is a lot of things to learn from,” Jackson said. “There were some bright spots. There were some things we can build on. Obviously, there were some mistakes that we have to get corrected, but I thought there were some positives.”
One area Jackson didn’t seem all that thrilled with was the run game. Isaiah Crowell and RG3 fumbled a hand-off, Crowell appeared to miss at least 2 blocking assignments and he lost 2 yards on his only carry while Duke Johnson ran for 11 on his only tote.
“It was OK. I have a high expectation for our running game,” Jackson said. “We had a couple opportunities to make some things happen that we kind of didn’t get done.
“We’ll just continue to work at it. We’ll get this solved, I promise you that.”
Jackson thought Robert Griffin III, who completed 4-of-8 passes for 67 yards, stood in the pocket and played well with the exception of the interception thrown in the direction of tight end Gary Barnidge in the red zone on their opening possession.
“Until you really know guys can you lead them to the places you want to lead them to,” Jackson said. “I think that was a little too soon to try that”
The Browns return to practice Sunday and their second preseason game is Thursday night against the Atlanta Falcons.
“I think normally teams make a huge jump from Week 1 to Week 2,” Jackson said. “What I’m looking for is the execution in all three phases to be better – offensively, defensively and special teams. We’re an offense that we want to be very consistent as we play and we want to become dynamic. We had a chance to do that, just didn’t finish it in the first drive. We want to be able to get off the field on defense. We need to get some stops and get some three-and-outs and be better on third down. On special teams, we want to make sure that we don’t have turnovers or cause the offense or defense to be put in a bad situation.”
The Right Guy – Austin Pasztor started at right tackle Friday night and Jackson apparently liked what he saw enough to stick with him – at least for now.
“Austin battled. I thought he battled hard,” Jackson said. “Really for his first time under the gun against an opponent’s defense, I thought he competed extremely hard. I think he’s only going to get better.”
Jackson spoke highly of center Cameron Erving as well even though he conceded overall there needs to be some work done up front.
“I thought protection wasn’t as good as I like it to be,” Jackson said. “Obviously, that’s why I said there are some things we need to clean up and shore up a little bit. It can be better, but I also think the rhythm and timing of getting the ball out can be better, too. It’s going to be an ongoing working process. We’re going to get that fixed and I feel good about that.”
High Praise – Jackson was asked to single out a few young players that stood out to him after watching film and he rattled off several names.
“The young two defensive players – Emmanuel [Ogbah] and Carl [Nassib] – I thought they did a good job,” Jackson said. “I thought my man Mr. [Tracy] Howard on defense did a good job. Again, you’re asking about young players, I thought those guys really showed up. I thought Ricardo Louis did a really good job on special teams. I thought [Derrick] Kindred did a really good job on special teams and did some good things on defense….Again, we’re just going to keep pushing these young guys and pushing our old guys as well so that we can get this football team better.”
Injury Report – Browns receiver Rannell Hall has been lost for the season head coach Hue Jackson confirmed Saturday.
Hall, who was originally signed by Tampa bay as an undrafted free agent out of Central Florida in 2015 before the Browns signed him off their practice squad last December, went down in the third quarter after his leg got caught while cutting after catching a 19-yard pass from Austin Davis.
X-rays revealed that he broke his fibula.
“It’s unfortunate,” Jackson said.
Davis is also now in the NFL’s concussion protocol after getting hit in the head 3 plays after Hall’s injury. There was some good news: X-rays on Terrelle Pryor’s hand were negative and he is fine.
“We had some bumps and bruises in the game, but I don’t think it’s anything too significant,” Jackson added. “We’ll go back to work with the guys that we have, and hopefully, we’ll get some guys back and keep moving forward.”