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Eric Mangini hot-seat meter: A little warmer

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Recent posts by Mike Wilkening

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Posted Dec. 14, 2010 @ 7:40 p.m. ET
By Mike Wilkening

This season, the Browns have lost in the final seconds of overtime. They have lost a pair of games by double digits. They booted away an 11-point lead at Tampa Bay in Week One.

But Sunday's 13-6 loss at Buffalo may have been the worst defeat of any they have taken this season, because of the vaguely 2009-like stench to the proceedings. The Browns were held to 187 yards by Buffalo, the first time all season they have gained less than 210 yards in a game. Cleveland gained 200 yards or less in eight games a season ago. 

Again, again, again ... the 2010 Browns are better than that. But here they are at 5-8, and three more losses will give them the same record in '09. It's hard not to view this as a missed opportunity for Cleveland.

Their best remaining chance at a win comes Sunday at Cincinnati, which has lost 10 straight games. However, the same can be said about the Bengals, who finish with games vs. San Diego and at Baltimore. You wouldn't know it from just looking at the record, but Cincinnati has played respectively at times during its losing streak. Also, the Bengals' passing game presented a host of problems for Cleveland in the first meeting.

To play as poorly as they did vs. the Bills can't be regarded as anything but a major disappointment for Eric Mangini's Browns, whose unsound play (three turnovers) and inability to get anything going offensively cost them dearly. The good news for Mangini's club: Its track record suggests it can muster a better performance than this against Cincinnati.

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