BEREA, Ohio (AP) — There won't be any playoffs stuffed in stockings again in Cleveland this year, but Jason Campbell has decided to make the most of his final start in what has been another bitter season for the beleaguered Browns.
"It's Christmas time, time to be jolly, not sullen," Campbell said Tuesday. "It's time to smile and not frown. We don't need any Grinches. We need to go out, have fun, cut it loose and fix the things we need to fix in the offseason and come back next year."
Campbell's positive approach and attitude are in stark contrast to his postgame comments following Sunday's 24-13 loss to the New York Jets. Campbell played poorly as the Browns (4-11) lost their sixth straight and ninth in 10 overall, a skid that has given them six consecutive seasons with at least 11 losses. Campbell admitted to "pressing" during the game, and that his desire to make big plays had an adverse effect, resulting in costly mistakes.
Campbell said he was still "pretty down" on Monday, but after speaking with his father, Larry, he decided it was time to lighten up.
"He's the guy I go to to give me that little extra boost that I need," Campbell said of his dad. "He asked me what's my Christmas gift, I told him I really don't want a Christmas gift, just to get a ' W.' Just to end the season the right way, that would be the only Christmas gift I'd really appreciate."
The Browns haven't won since Nov. 3, when a 24-18 victory over Baltimore put them at 4-5 and actually triggered postseason talk that now not only seems presumptive but preposterous.
Campbell, who began the season backing up Brandon Weeden and then got passed by Brian Hoyer on the depth chart, had expected so much more. The 31-year-old veteran signed as a free agent in March because he thought he'd have a chance to revive his career, which seemed on the rise before a season-ending injury for Oakland in 2011.
He was playing the best of his career then only to be sabotaged by injury.
Campbell has shown flashes of being a dependable starter this season, but was slowed by a rib injury and concussion. He's gone 1-6.
On Dec. 8, he passed for a career-high 391 yards in a heartbreaking loss at New England, but followed it with uneven outings against Chicago and New York, showings that may have affected his future in Cleveland.