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Browns Stock Report: Week Nine

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Recent posts by Mike Wilkening

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Posted Nov. 07, 2011 @ 4:45 p.m. ET
By Mike Wilkening

The Browns are three games out of first place in the AFC North with eight left to play. We take a look at whose stock is on the rise and decline after their 30-12 loss at Houston:

Rising

PK Phil Dawson — Knocked home two more field goals of 50 yards or more, giving him six 50-plus field goals on the season. Consider the state of the offense without his long-range kicks at the risk of having your head hurt.

RB Thomas Clayton — Rushed for only 10 yards on five carries, but showed a little bit of a burst, and Chris Ogbonnaya underwhelmed in his first start, rushing for 28 yards on 13 carries and losing a fumble.

WR Joshua Cribbs — He was the Browns' best receiver Sunday, catching all five passes for 50 yards, including a two-yard TD pass. This seems plainly obvious, but it needs to be said again: he needs to get the ball as much as logically possible. 

DE Emmanuel Stephens — Notched a career-high four tackles Sunday.

Falling

The run defense — The Browns were simply overmatched trying to stop RBs Arian Foster and Ben Tate as Houston set a franchise record with 261 rushing yards. The Texans simply beat the Browns at all levels in the running game.

The pass protection — QB Colt McCoy was sacked four times and was under pressure throughout the game. The Browns do not handle the blitz particularly well, a problem that cost them vs. Houston and looms as a problem with half of their final eight regular-season games against Baltimore and Pittsburgh.

RB Chris Ogbonnaya — Has received a significant amount of work in the past two games and has not stood out, fumbling twice, struggling in pass protection and failing to gain more than 13 yards on any of his touches.

WR Greg Little — Has been targeted 19 times in the past two games but has caught just six passes for 61 yards.

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