The Sports Xchange
NFL Team Report - Cleveland Browns - INSIDE SLANT
The Browns play the New York Jets in MetLife Stadium on Sunday, and then for the second straight year close out the season in Pittsburgh.
Cornerback Joe Haden, one of the Browns' few standouts during the four losing seasons he has endured in the NFL, suffered a hip pointer against the Chicago Bears in the 38-31 loss last week. He does not know whether he'll recover in time to play the Jets. He did not practice Wednesday.
"If I can play, I'm going to play," Haden said. "If I can't, I won't. So I would love to definitely finish out the season and play. But I'm not going to go out there if I'm not ready or if I'm going to hurt the team in any way."
Haden gave up a 41-yard touchdown pass to Antonio Brown in the 27-11 loss to the Steelers on Nov. 24, the 20-yard game-winning touchdown pass to Cecil Shorts III in the 32-28 loss to the Jaguars a week later and a two-yard pass to New England wide receiver Julian Edelman on Dec. 8. He was beaten on a five-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Marshall before being injured last week.
Haden is still the best cornerback on the roster. Julian Posey would get more playing time if Haden cannot play. If Haden has to stay behind and watch the game on television he obviously can't do anything to halt the losing streak.
"It's very disappointing, very disappointing, especially when you have a team that you know that can win," Haden said. "It's frustrating, but you always try to stay positive, you always try to look ahead and we still have two more games left. We just got to finish the season off strong.
"We don't want to go into next offseason with this bad a taste in our mouths. At least go into it going up. Everybody do their job. Just try to win these last two however we can."
The Browns lost fourth-quarter leads in each of the last three games. The Patriots scored 16 points in the fourth quarter a week before the Bears scored 21 in the fourth.
Throughout the locker room players say the same thing; if they knew what was wrong they'd fix it.
The Jets are in a similar situation. At 6-8 they have a better record than the Browns, but they are out of the playoff hunt, too. They could be playing for coach Rex Ryan's job.
"I wish I had an answer for you guys about what's happening at the end of games or what it is," Browns linebacker Paul Kruger said. "But we're a good football team, we're playing with everybody. We should have beaten the Patriots. The Bears game was tough to lose. We need to figure how to finish it off right."
SERIES HISTORY: 21st meeting. Browns lead the series, 12-8. Four games between the Browns and Jets have gone into overtime, including a playoff game the Browns won in double overtime. Overall the Browns are 3-1 in those overtime games.
NFL Team Report - Cleveland Browns - NOTES, QUOTES
The Browns last played the Jets on Nov. 14, 2010 and lost, 26-20, in overtime. The game was played near the end of Eric Mangini's two-year tenure as the Browns' head coach. It was a tough loss for him to absorb because he was beaten by the previous team that fired him.
The Browns forced overtime on a three-yard touchdown pass from Colt McCoy to Mohamed Massaquoi with only 44 seconds left in regulation. Santonio Holmes scored the winning touchdown on a 37-yard pass from Mark Sanchez with only 16 seconds left in the overtime.