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By the Numbers: Turnovers, red zone blues loom large in 1st half of Browns season

CLEVELAND — Breaking down the first half of the Browns' 2017 season by the numbers…

21 — Partly defined by self-inflicted wounds and missed opportunities, the Browns lead the league with 21 turnovers, including 17 interceptions. Cleveland's giveaways have been the difference in several close games, including an overtime loss to the Titans two weeks ago.

4 —Speaking of narrow defeats, the Browns have lost four games by three points. They fell to the Steelers (21-18), the Colts (31-28), Jets (17-14) and Titans (12-9).

84 — Under the supervision of new defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, the Browns' run defense has been dominant against even top-notch opponents. Cleveland ranks sixth against opposing ground games, allowing an average of 84 yards a contest. For context, the Browns featured the league's second-to-worst run defense last season. Cleveland's defense also ranks ninth in average yards surrendered with 313.5.

10,363 —An improbable and historic streak came to an end when Joe Thomas suffered a season-ending triceps injury two weeks ago against the Titans. Thomas, the 10-time Pro Bowl left tackle, had played in 10,363 consecutive snaps before missing his first-ever play since coming into the league in 2007. Thomas was placed on injured reserve last week.

51.1 — In seven starts, rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer has posted a quarterback rating of 51.1 in what's been a season of highs and lows. Kizer, a second-round pick from Notre Dame, has passed for 1,144 yards, three touchdowns and is tied with Carolina's Cam Newton with a league-high 11 interceptions.

55 —The Browns have struggled in the red zone, scoring just 55 percent of the time (nine touchdowns, two field goals) on 20 trips inside the 20-yard line.

14.9 —Coupled with those struggles in the scoring zone, Cleveland's offense ranks 31st in points per game (14.9) and 26th in total yards with 301.3 a contest. The Browns have been especially inefficient on third down, converting 28 percent of their attempts (31-of-107).

5 —Veteran cornerback Jason McCourty, who joined the Browns in free agency this past spring, leads the team with five total takeaways and three interceptions. McCourty, who spent his first eight NFL seasons with the Titans, has been a welcomed addition on and off the field.

71 —In his first season as a full-time starter, middle linebacker Joe Schobert leads the team with 71 tackles, including 42 solo stops. Schobert, a fourth-round pick from Wisconsin in 2016, recorded his first-career interception against the Vikings last weekend.

16 — In eight games, the Browns have totaled 16 sacks. Four of those have come from rookie defensive end Myles Garrett, who leads the team with four sacks in just three career games. Garrett, the first-overall NFL Draft pick, has been limited by injuries.

324 — Running back Duke Johnson Jr., who has emerged as Cleveland's top offensive playmaker, leads the team with 324 receiving yards and a touchdown on 36 catches.

747 — Meanwhile, the Browns receivers have struggled to consistently produce, totaling 64 catches for 747 yards. Second-year receiver Ricardo Louis leads the room with 23 catches for 292 yards and a touchdown. 95 —After pledging a re-commitment to its run game this past offseason, the unit has produced mixed results through the first half of the year. The Browns rank 24th with 95 yards per game while featured back Isaiah Crowell is averaging 3.4 yards a carry.

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