CLEVELAND (92.3 The Fan) – Cody Kessler will remain the starting quarterback for Thursday night’s game in Baltimore.
Despite falling to 0-6 as a starter following Sunday’s 35-10 loss to the Cowboys, head coach Hue Jackson is sticking with the rookie.
“I am not going to play musical chairs with our quarterback,” Jackson said Monday on a conference call. “I made the decision to go with Cody, and that is what I am going to do. All of them, Josh, Cody or Robert (Griffin III), we have not gotten a win. I do not think any of us are excited about that. That is the quarterback’s job more so than anything is to win games. The stat line is the stat line, but winning is truly what this is all about.”
Kessler completed 19 of 27 passes for 203 yards with a touchdown to receiver Terrelle Pryor that came right before halftime as part of an 80-yard drive in less than 90 seconds, but did not win.
“There were some positives but not enough,” Jackson said. “I think the biggest disappointment for me as the leader of our offense is that we have not been able to win. We have not found a way to score more points than the other team to win a game. There are some things that I am sure individually that our players have done really well, but as an offensive team, the quarterback’s job is to get the team a win.”
In Kessler’s defense, most of the blame for that should fall on the defense which has allowed over 30 points per game this season or the fact he got hit 7 more times, including 4 sacks Sunday, or receivers who can’t get open quickly enough. The lack of completing deep passes remains a concern as the vast majority of his throws are inside 20 yards.
“I am not going to just lay it at Cody’s feet,” Jackson said. “Obviously, he has to improve in some areas, but I think our receivers have to improve, I think protection has to improve. At the end of the day, we just have to improve overall as an offensive football team.”
In his 6 starts, Kessler has completed 67.5 percent of his passes for 1,150 yards and 5 touchdowns with an interception.
Healthy Hand – Browns rookie receiver Corey Coleman caught 3 passes for 41 yards after missing the previous 6 games due to a broken bone in his right hand.
“I felt good. I felt healthy out there,” Coleman, who was targeted 7 times, said. “My hand wasn’t bothering me or anything.”
Coleman came back just in time to face the Ravens, who he burned for 104 yards and 2 touchdowns in Week 2, Thursday night but he’s not expecting a repeat performance, no matter how badly he’d love to do it.
“You can’t look at it like that,” Coleman said. “I have to come to work. I have been out for a couple weeks. I have to get on the field and make sure I know exactly what I need to do on plays. They know what I did last time that we played, too, so they are going to be preparing. I am going to be prepared, too. We are going to see on Thursday night.”
Full Workload – Newly acquired linebacker Jamie Collins played every snap – 73 total – defensively yesterday for the Browns in the loss to the Cowboys.
the 2015 Pro Bowler finished with 8 tackles and registered the lone tackle for loss and quarterback hit of the day for the Browns while playing both inside and outside but also got mixed up in a coverage that cost the Browns a touchdown.
“He looked really good blitzing at times, got some pressure every now and then,” Jackson said. “I think it was too much pressure to think that one guy was just going to totally change the defense. He has to play within the structure of our defense, but we think he is a good player.”
Promise Keeper – After the Browns tied the franchise record for most losses to open a season and set a new team record for consecutive losses with a 12th defeat, linebacker Christian Kirksey put himself out there Sunday and declared they would not go winless and finish the season 0-16.
After sleeping on it, Kirksey, who said he hasn’t received much backlash or feedback after making the proclamation, had no regrets Monday.
“Each year, no matter what you are doing you are going to face some kind of adversity,” Kirksey said. “Right now, ours is being winless right now, but that is life. You have to keep going. You have to take the punches and you have to roll with it. One thing I know about this team is that we are going to continue to fight. I have full faith in our coaching staff and I have full faith in our organization that we are going to keep fighting. That is our main goal.”
Injury Report – Defensive end Carl Nassib will be “fine” according after leaving Sunday due to an eye injury while cornerback Jamar Taylor will be questionable this week due to a groin injury according to Jackson.