Cleveland (WOIO) - It wasn't just the loss, although the past two Sundays have brought a harsh reminder of just where the Browns still reside in the AFC North: the bottom. And it wasn't just the difference in talent, although that was once again on display, especially behind center, in a game between the Browns and Steelers. It was the lack of passion that was most disheartening to Browns fans, who showed up in frigid temperatures hoping their team would light a fire, and instead it was the Steelers, once again, who delivered all the heat.
Where was the swagger, of a team that had already won two games within the division, and was hoping to deliver a third message? Where was the attitude, that the power is shifting, not only within this rivalry, but within the AFC North? And where was the fight, after their starting quarterback, Jason Campbell, was knocked silly by a third-quarter hit?
Instead, the life was sucked out of the Browns, and their fans, as they turned back to their least favorite option, Brandon Weeden, for the third time this season. It was as though the Steelers, like the Bengals a week before 'em, had heard rumblings of an awakened franchise in Cleveland, one that was ready to challenge the bullies to the East, and South, and decided to come into First Energy Stadium intent on immediately slapping the Browns around. It worked.
And so, nothing has changed. The same players made the big plays, the same team came out on top, and the same team slipped back to the basement.
If only they would have put up a fight on the way down.