Four takeaways from Browns opening win of the preseason The Cleveland Browns won their fifth consecutive preseason game on Thursday as they defeated the New York Giants. While being the preseason champs is fun and everything Genard Avery Jersey Stitched , it would be nice if this team could figure out how to put together a few wins when the games actually count. That day may be coming soon, however, as there were some good things to come out of the game at MetLife Stadium. Here are four takeaways as we wait for the Browns to return to practice on Sunday in preparation for their preseason home opener against the Buffalo Bills on Friday.David Njoku can be a nightmare for the defenseDavid Njoku was targeted three times in the game and finished with a pair of receptions, both of which went for touchdowns. The second-year tight end’s athleticism was on display on his 36-yard catch-and-run touchdown in the first quarter. But it was his dedication to his route on his second touchdown reception that caught the eye of quarterback Baker Mayfield, according to clevelandbrowns.com:Those two catches highlight why the Browns selected Njoku in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft and indicate the matchup problem he can create for opposing defenses. The running game needs to be betterIt was only one game, but the Browns running game was horrific against the Giants.The primary running back trio of Carlos Hyde, Nick Chubb and Duke Johnson combined to rush 17 times for a total of 13 yards. Not all of that falls on the running backs, especially in the case of Chubb, as the offensive line did not always carry the water in the run game:The thought of quarterback Tyrod Taylor and Youth Desmond Harrison Jersey , eventually, Mayfield lighting up the stat sheet in the passing game is fun, but the reality is the Browns are going to need to be able to run the ball if they want to have any hope of success on offense. And if there are more days like Thursday? Well, then it is going to be a long year.The penalties have got to stopFans saw an all-too-familiar sight on Thursday as the Browns were flagged for 13 penalties.A couple of the penalties were clearly of the dubious nature, most notably the taunting penalties on wide receiver Jarvis Landry and cornerback Denzel Ward in the first quarter, but the Browns are simply not good enough to overcome that many mistakes. Simply put, the team needs to tighten things up.The optimism might be validated this timeThis is always the best time of year to be a Browns fan as anything seems possible.Then the regular season starts and reality hit.But this year it feels different.Taylor and Landry bring a level of professionalism to the offense that the Browns have not had in years. The running game should work itself out, and Njoku and Johnson provide some explosive playmaking options for the offense. The defense is filled with a mix of veterans, including Jamie Collins <a title="Desmond Harrison Jersey Stitched" href="http://www.thebrownsclub.com/desmond-harrison-jersey/Youth E.J. Gaines Jersey">Desmond Harrison Jersey Stitched , Christian Kirksey, Mychal Kendricks, and young players who can be difference makers in Myles Garrett, Emmanuel Ogbah, Ward and Jabrill Peppers. There is still a long way to go, but for the first time in a long time the upcoming regular season holds the potential to finally validate the optimism that Browns fans show this franchise on an annual basis. Rookie head coach keeping his wits about him, which is a good sign for what lies ahead."WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections Daily Dawg ChowRufio’s PlaybookFreddie Kitchens is not afraid of the NFL spotlightNew,33commentsRookie head coach keeping his wits about him, which is a good sign for what lies ahead.EDTShareTweetShareShareFreddie Kitchens is not afraid of the NFL spotlightKen Blaze-USA TODAY SportsIt is still too early to know what Freddie Kitchens will be as a head coach E.J. Gaines Jerseys Stitched , but his comments on Tuesday at the annual NFL meetings left no doubt about one thing:Kitchens is ready for whatever the league is going to throw at him and the Browns come the fall.The Browns have quickly become a national story as a team filled with big personalities, including quarterback Baker Mayfield, and wide receivers Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham Jr. Because of that, the Browns are expected to receive several prime time games this fall, possibly as many as the league maximum of five. Those are some pretty lofty heights for a team that went 3-36-1 under Hue Jackson - the worst head coach in NFL history - and has only posted two winning seasons since 1994. Kitchens is taking it all in stride, however, as he explained when questioned about the renewed attention on the franchise, according to ohio.com:And what about the prospect of opening the season on Sunday night against the defending champion New England Patriots?It is the perfect attitude for Kitchens to take. In addition to managing the team on game days, Kitchens is faced with the task of keeping everyone focused on what is important. The hype for the upcoming season has already hit a new level Youth Jarvis Landry Jersey , which is pretty amazing when you consider that most Browns fans live in a perpetual state of hype, and it is only going to get crazier the closer we get to the start of the season. Kitchens may have been a surprise choice as head coach, but given the way he has handled the situation so far, the Browns appear to be in very good hands.
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