There is a fine line between success and failure. And according to Cleveland Browns offensive coordinator Norv Turner, it takes all 11 players to be on the same page for the game plan to be executed properly and successfully.
Turner’s focus this week has been figuring out a way for more plays like the 74-yard third-quarter touchdown pass from quarterback
On second-and-five from their own 26-yard line, Campbell took a shotgun snap and lofted a pass down the left sideline for Gordon. Despite tight coverage by Cincinnati cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick, Gordon caught the ball and scampered into the end zone for his ninth career touchdown of more than 20 yards.
“We’ve watched their tape and guys that have gotten up the field on them are pretty good players,” Turner said. “We need to find a way to make some big plays. We got one in the second half. If we had not played the way we did in the second quarter, those are the kinds of plays that have helped us stay in games or helped us win games. For us to have success offensively, we need to find a way to get some big plays along with playing better on third down.
“(Campbell) just is steady. He comes in here and goes to work, and he’s been a good role model for our young guys. I don’t think it’s been any different this week. He’s preparing to play a real good Pittsburgh defense. Jason’s getting ready to go play, and I expect him to play well.”
Turner has also focused on eliminating mistakes that led to the Bengals getting touchdowns.
“The difference between playing at a high level and struggling could be one or two plays and we had a couple negative plays after we got off to a good start,” Turner said. “It kind of stream-rolled from there.
“It’s just everyone doing their deal, everyone doing their jobs. The thing that we’ve done when we played well, when we’ve given ourselves a chance win or won was taking care of the ball. It starts there. We have to take care of the ball.”
With 56 seconds remaining in the first quarter, Campbell and the Browns faced a first-and-10 from their own 20-yard line. He took a snap and intended to throw a pass to Gordon, but right defensive end Michael Johnson batted the ball into the air and linebacker James Harrison corralled the interception.
Harrison returned it for a touchdown, but an illegal block after the interception nullified the score. However, it still gave the Bengals a first-and-10 at the Browns’ 22-yard line, which they quickly turned into a 25-yard touchdown from quarterback Andy Dalton to tight end Jermaine Gresham.
“When you throw 57 times against the Bengals, you’re going to have protection problems, and we don’t want to be in that position, but we got in that position and we tried to make the most of it,” Turner said.
“They got penetration and knocked off our blocker. The guy who tipped it was unblocked, and I don’t think you ever ask (Campbell) to see that. He was looking out at Josh and Josh was open. It probably would’ve been a nice gain had the ball not been tipped.”