The Cleveland Browns kept things very close against the Philadelphia Eagles thanks to a strong defense that made life tough for quarterback Michael Vick. But the Brandon Weeden-led offense wasn't able to get much traction to reward the defense for its strong play. In fact, Weeden put on one of the worst performances of the week, and fans are actually calling for Colt McCoy to get the starting nod. That can never be a good sign.
SB Nation's Joel Thorman actually gave the Browns a little respect in his Week 2 power rankings, bumping them up from last place to No. 31.
31. Cleveland Browns (LW: 32, 0-1): Better effort than I thought against the Eagles. And Trent Richardson is kind of a badass. Brandon Weeden, on the other hand, could use some help.
Thorman moved the Browns up at the expense of the Miami Dolphins, who lost to the Houston Texans, 30-10, to start out their season. Other power rankings around the Internet aren't giving the Browns much credit for keeping it close against the Eagles, though. ESPN kept them at No. 31, while the National Football Post kept them at the very bottom of their own rankings.
Brian Billick of FOX Sports had them at the bottom of his rankings as well, and here's his analysis that goes alongside the ranking:
Brandon Weeden looked as bad as RG3 looked good. The defense, led by Joe Haden, looked impressive, but after testing positive for PEDs, Haden will be shelved for four weeks. The better strategy for this D: Rather than force interceptions, force them to punt . . . at least then Josh Cribbs has a chance to return it for points
Tongue-in-cheek aside, the bit about Haden being suspended for four games is definitely noteworthy. Of course, it's also noteworthy that Billick had the Eagles at the very top spot in his Week 1 rankings. Despite moving them down a full 10 spots in Week 2 based on their struggles against the Browns, he did not elect to move the Browns up at all.
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