Weeden feels Miami’s defensive pressure
CLEVELAND – They came at the Browns’ offensive line in waves, often overwhelming the unit with a relentless pass rush.
The Miami Dolphins front seven on defense had its way in a 23-10 win over the Browns Sunday at First Energy Stadium. The group had six sacks and numerous hurries of quarterback Brandon Weeden, who was intercepted three times.
Cameron Wake, who began to develop into a strong pass rusher while playing in the Canadian Football League, was a force. He had 2.5 of the sacks, but that was just part of his big day. He seemed to be in Weeden’s face all day long, often blowing past the blocks of Browns tackle Mitchell Schwartz.
Wake’s most impressive play came when he bull rushed past Schwartz and slammed Weeden to the ground on a fourth-and-2 call from the Browns’ 33 late in the game.
“We kept some cards in our back pocket throughout the preseason,” Wake said. “When we started this offseason, we looked at our room and knew that we have a lot of guys that can do a lot of things pretty well.
“We have guys that can stand up, guys that can drop, rush the middle, rush the outside. I mean, all the guys have athletic ability to do a lot of things.”
Weeden couldn’t remember ever being harassed so much in a game.
“They get after the passer,” Weeden said. “They create havoc. Our offensive line is good. I’m thrilled to have those guys in front of me. I wouldn’t trade them for anybody. We’re all going to learn from this. There’s no reason to point fingers.”
Schwartz wasn’t the only lineman on the right side of the Browns’ line that struggled. Guard Oniel Cousins, playing because Shawn Lauvao and Jason Pinkston are injured, was penalized four times totaling 33 yards.
“No one wants to get a penalty because we all want to give the team the best opportunity to win,” Cousins said. “I just have to focus on the next play and forget about the other one.”
Browns coach Rob Chudzinski said he never considered removing Cousins. If he had, the only option would have been rookie Garrett Gilkey, a seventh-round draft choice that made the roster with a decent preseason.
“Miami has an outstanding front,” Cousins said. “Between the pressure package and the guys they have up front, we knew all week long it was going to be important to handle their pressure. We did at times and other times we didn’t. You can’t point to just one guy. They were able to affect Brandon’s throws.”