TAMPA — **Hue Jackson didn't flinch postgame as he dissected the Browns' loss to the Buccaneers on Friday night. The first-year coach didn't sugarcoat the 30-13 defeat — a display that touched all three phases of the game — and the work that's left to be done before the regular season.
"We're not going to accept this," Jackson said. "We're going to go back to work and fix this and talk about our team and our team knows that."
But neither he nor the Browns players are dispirited by what happened at Raymond James Stadium.
"We've got to get better, we've got to get better in a hurry, (but) I'm not discouraged. I think a lot of people get discouraged in these situations. I'm not," Jackson said.
"Because I really truly know what's in our locker room and we've got to work. We've just got to understand how hard it is and how accountable you have to be to each other on every play and just what you've got to do in order to play winning football and that's my job. And I feel very comfortable and confident in that, we'll get that done and get that across."
The Browns have shown improvement since they began training camp a month ago, most recently in what were a spirited two days of joint practices against the Buccaneers earlier this week.
"We put a few days together. Obviously we didn't put it together today," safety Ibraheim Campbell said, "but while we were down here, we showed some things that we kind of haven't seen before. It kind of gives us a good feeling going into the season."
Against that backdrop, Jackson won't look at Friday night's loss and disregard the progress that was made in Tampa this week. "That experience is still in the bank," he said, "but I think we all understand that playing a game is what's important."
The Browns take on the Buccaneers in Tampa for the third preseason game.
Jackson said the Browns need to make sure that success in practice carries over when it matters the most. "We've got to make sure that the practice part of it is that and then in the game, we've got to get that part of it right," he said. "The game is about still winning and losing and playing and performing in the game. So we've got to get this better and we will."
Jackson also played down the notion that a youthful roster might be behind its developmental curve.
"This is just one game, preseason game, and again it's just another opportunity for us to evaluate our team. There's some things that I was, you know, hoping that would be better that I think we can do better," he said.
"But I don't think it says to me that we're further away, what it says is that we've just got work to do, a lot of work to do. We've still got one more of these preseason games and then it's for good. The wi- losses go in the ledger for real."
In the meantime, the Browns will get back to work in Berea before hosting the Bears on Thursday night in their fourth and final preseason game.
"We're a work in progress, and I think we all know that," Jackson said.
"But we'll continue to work but by no means are we going to put our heads in the sand and say all the stuff that we need to fix. We're going to fix this, I promise you."