This is my first fanpost so bare with me. I thought it would be fun to reflect on this year as it progress to get to where we are now, revisit some good and bad times just to get the complete feel on how this season has gone. When you look at it as a whole it has been truly remarkable, the offense has had its struggles and the defense has been lights out, no one, I mean no one picked us to be wear we are this year with this murderous schedule. The browns were the sexy pick to win the division this year and we lost Faneca to an already OK line which left questions about it. But looking at the schedule we figured the first to 10-6 would win this division and we know that would be tough.
Houston - This was a feel good game. Only thing that went wrong was Ben's shoulder injury but Ben is always getting injured it seems. Parker got his 100 and while I knew the texans were no joke you had to think man we have a long road ahead of us. Houston scored 14 of their 17 in garbage minutes of the 4th quarter. Great start to the season.
at Browns - This game was hard to watch mainly because of the weather, but what matters is that we won. This game had a lot of hype to it because of the browns' season last year. We knew ben had a slightly separated shoulder. Still had no idea how good this season was going to be.
at Philly - The nightmare comes to reality. I remember thinking we are not going anywhere this season. While it is always hard to complete the back-end of a two game road trip in the NFL I did not expect this poor of an effort from the offense. The defense played great I must say and we got the philly that beat dallas and not the philly that lost to washington and the ravens. Our line as a whole just whiffed, and while one game a season does not make it did foreshadow the struggles to come. Parket got hurt and hasn't really been the same since this season, hopefully after he got his first 100 yard game since the browns again this week againts the browns and a bye week, when we see him again in the divisional round it will be old FWP. Now lets move on because this is the lowest point of the season ( I really don't know if we want to face philly if they make it to the superbowl)
Balt - I hate the ravens and THEY STANK!!! The o-line picked up right where they left off from the philly game and we did nothing on offense. Although its not all the o-line fault but the way the offense is ran the oline issues is magnified with the combination of ben holding to the ball, play calling, and recievers getting open (which I don't think was really much of the problem). But ben came in the second have and we re-discovered the no huddle and the defense came up big to get a key win. Mendi got hurt and I really wanted to see what he could do this season. Fifth favorite win of the season. I hate the rat-birds and they STANK.
at Jags - I wanted this game bad because of last year. This game went well and I remember this is the first of Nate the great bombs. This was the start of at least three consecutive games where he had 40+ yard receptions for TDs (almost had one in the giants game but it got called back). I still didn't want to take much from this game because let's face it they had their 2nd string line starting and it wasn't the same team as last year. But the victory still felt good. Also we really got to see what we had in M. Moore. Fourth favorite win of the season. Payback is always sweet.
Bye 4-1 at the bye and you felt good that we didn't suck but still I was weary about the schedule ahead, it would only get harder, 10-6 was still probable.
At the bungles - Was this ever in doubt? Probably the easiest game of the season here. I'd hate to live in ohio and be a fan of football. Best thing they got in Lebron and he plays basketball still no championships. Also who can forget Hines jaw-dropping (pun intended) hit on Keith rivers. Mos Def the second best hit of the season.
NYG - Man was this game huge!!! Both teams 5-1 and it showed. This was a heavy weight match where NYG got all the breaks and deserved to win. I really don't like Eli but I can't be mad at the giants for taking advantage of our mistakes, gotta slap Holmes (no more weed please). Although that is not why we lost - 4 picks (1 was a drop and the other was a great play and the 1 came late in the game trying to come back), deebo long snapping the ball which should be illegal cause balls flying that high at that speed can kill, and nate having his TD called back. Think abou this game, we only lost by 7, tell me what team has 4 turnovers, a safety, and a TD called back against the Giants and only loses by one score, and that was a struggle for them. Also they basically lived in our territory because our offense couldn't do much and punting was bad. I really hope we get this team again in the Superbowl.
At Wash - I remember this game because a deadskin fan came to me and said, Portis is going to run all over the steelers. I laughed and I'm still laughing. Good job of leftwich stepping up and sealing our first win against the NFC East. This game showed how much we missed Troy P last year, he was everywhere, making tackles doing his thing. He is makes this defense from good to great. Here is where we hear at lot of people calling for Leftwich to start, Ben was banged up bad. I still think Ben is our best shot and number 6th.
Colts - Dissapointing to say the least. Even after Ike brick hands played hot potato and tap passed the ball to R. Wayne for a TD, I really thought we would have won this game. 17-7 witht he ball, ben with a separated shoulder tries to go deep to holmes in his own redzone and just can't get it there, if he did it would have been 24-7 cause holmes had his man beat in single coverage. But that was the turning point in the game because afte the pick the colts scored and went into halftime 14-17 and thats all the momentum they needed to get a 20-24 win. Still only a 4 point loss and I wouldn't mind facing them in the playoffs.
Chargers - Great Effort again by the defense. Poor effort again by the offense what can you say? Yea the last play we should have counted but the point is that our offense didn't score a single TD in this one and thank God for James Harrison safety or we would have lost that game. Then again you can look at it when the offense needed to move and get a FG it did. To me James Harrison got the game ball in this one. Who can forget Troy P. interception it was the number 2 play of the year according to ESPN in all of the NFL but I think it was really number 1, never will see a more amazing INT.
Bungles - Any comment necessary? This was the beginning of our 5 game winning streat that propelled us to the #2 spot in the playoffs, thanks Cincy!! The punting was horrible (at least thats what Tomlin said) and it was. I knew we had to get a new punter, ernster wasn't getting it. We did and berger has been a lot better.
At New England - my 3rd favorite win of the season. What more can you say about this game? Defense lights out and offense didn't show much signs of impotence. Few things are better than going to new england and beating the hated cheatriots. I remember cassell was coming off back to back 400 yard passing efforts, and we dominated. the pats in my mind deserve everything they get by not making the playoffs, everyone talks about how it's such a crime cause they are 11-5 but I think its justice they cheated their way to 3 superbowls and us out of 2. I will never forget that.
Dallas - the only thing better than blowing out the pats in new england is tearing the hearts out of the cowgals at home. I love shutting their stupid, no football knowledge fans up. Romo is over-hyped the only thing that matters in this league is what you do in the playoffs - ask Dan Marino he had all the stats and would have given anything for a super bowl win. Romo is Choke-o in big games and TO is a team destroyer. Looking back on this game we saw dallas go 1-3 in december and the countdown continues 4385 days since the Cowgals last won a playoff game. It will be 365 more days until they can try to break that streak, so it will be 4750 days and hopefully they can get to 5000 for all I care. 2nd favorite win of the season.
at Balt - Did I mention that I hate Balt more than any other team in the league - yes more than the pats, more than the cowgals? Why you ask, because unlike the other two teams this team is in our division and can do more damage to us than any of the other teams. This is still the old browns to me and I hate Ray lewis' big mouth. Shutting him up brings pleasure to me in ways I dare not mention on this post. Going into baltimore with everything on the line, the division, playoffs, the number 2 seed in the AFC and coming out to win the game on the final drive of the game with a holmes TD pass ripping the hearts out of the rat birds and breaking the streak of losing 5 or 6 straight at Balt. This game was the best win of the season for me because it sealed everything up and it was against the rat-birds.
at Ten - Who cares. We gonna stomp on Fat boy Lendale next time we seem him. This team was tired, and complacent, they got the bye and didnt want to kill themselves trying to get the 1 seed when the 1 seed rarely gets to the superbowl and rarely wins it thats.
Stains/browns- Yes ben got a concussion but we won 31-0 and he will be back for the playoffs. I'm glad we got the running game going in this game and really wish ben would have gotten a rhytm going in this game but se la vi.
So we went 3-1, 3-1, 3-1, 3-1 to get to 12-4. Now we just need another 3 game win streak to have the ultamite season. I like our chances and if the line steps up and ben plays mistake free I think we can do it. In the off season we should re-vamp the line and a easier schedule next year will lead us to trying to repeat should we win this year. Its been a great season but it will be all for not if we dont get one for the other hand.