Young Browns take confidence from wins

Posted Dec 5, 2012

The Cleveland Browns have gained confidence from their first two-game winning streak of the season.

When the final seconds ticked off the game clock at the Coliseum in Oakland and the Cleveland Browns wrapped up a 20-17 win over the Oakland Raiders, the team had its first two-game winning streak since the second and third weeks of the 2011 regular season.

After starting the season 0-5, the Browns have gone 4-3 over the last seven games and carry a 4-8 record into Sunday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Cleveland Browns Stadium.

On Wednesday, starting quarterback Brandon Weeden said team’s confidence is “definitely on the way up.”

“We’re 4-8 and guys are still coming to work enthusiastic,” Weeden said. “Guys are excited about the opportunity. Obviously, we’re on an uphill climb because we put ourselves in the situation. We’re playing these last four games for the last four games. I think attitudes have been great. That’s all you can ask, especially this late in the year. Some guys will hit a wall, but I don’t see it. We’re hungry and it makes it more fun to come to work every day.”

Browns running back Trent Richardson added, “For the younger guys that haven’t started winning yet in the NFL, we’re just getting our confidence up in the league. For the vets, they are just like, ‘We’ve got to keep going. We can’t get satisfied with it.’ That’s one thing we’re trying to learn as a rookie group, that we can’t get satisfied with it. For us, we’ve just got to keep on trucking.”

After five one-score losses, including a 23-20 overtime setback at Dallas on Nov. 18, the Browns have won back-to-back one-score games for the first time since that two-game streak in 2011.

“It’s always nice to talk about victories, no matter what,” Richardson said. “If it’s an ugly win or a bad win, no matter it’s always good to talk about victories. We’ve still got a lot to conquer and stuff like that. We’ve still got a lot of goals to reach. We’re still going and we’re still trying to get to where we want to be. We haven’t gotten there yet. We’ve still got a lot to put together, but we know we’re on the right page.

“We’re starting to put games together and realize that everybody’s starting to trust in themselves and realizing that, ‘Hey, we can do it.’ We can beat anybody, no matter how young we are, no matter what they say about us. We’re in every game. It’s not like we’re getting blown out. We’ve got to finish. It’s starting to come together.”

Browns coach Pat Shurmur said that after consecutive wins, he sees “a focused preparation” while working toward the next week’s game.

“I see a bunch of guys that are looking forward to playing the game and play hard front to back,” Shurmur said. “We found a way in the last two weeks to make enough plays and finish games with victories. I think you can build confidence from that. It’s very, very important that you don’t forget the process because there are mistakes made in the games. You can win a game sometimes in spite of mistakes. The margin in this league is very thin, where the next week you could lose a game because of them. I think that’s why you just keep going back to practicing and trying to improve. I think our guys understand that.”

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