ALTIMORE- The Cleveland Browns (0-1) travel to M&T Bank Stadium to face the Ravens (1-0) in their second AFC North matchup. The Browns nearly defeated Pittsburgh but lost 21-18. The Ravens won against the Cincinnati Bengals. Browns rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer showed flashes of brilliance by making smart throws and extending plays. His one big error was underthrowing a pass that was intercepted by rookie T.J. Watt, J.J. Watt’s brother. How will Kizer fare in week two?
The Browns defense held the Steelers to 14 points. The game may have turned out differently if not for the blocked punt that was returned for touchdown on the Browns first possession. Cleveland had a golden opportunity to lead the game but fell short due to Watt’s interception on that possession in the fourth quarter.
Cleveland is tasked with shutting down veteran receiver Mike Wallace, who has a reputation for his speed much like Steve Smith did. Breshad Perriman will likely be tough to defend as well.
Kizer still needs time to progress as a quarterback and develop chemistry with his receivers. The Browns had some success running the ball but need to succeed with deep passing. Kizer had opportunities to throw for big gains and easy touchdowns but misfired on those by throwing to far. It will be interesting to see if Kizer improves on his accuracy. The upgraded offensive line allowed seven sacks which is a concern. Kizer usually had a lot of time to make all of his reads but the Steelers defense still brought a lot of pressure. Protecting the quarterback will surely be a point of emphasis in this game.
This game will likely be a defensive game as both defenses show a lot promise. The Browns will pressure Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco throughout the game and force turnovers. Emmanuel Ogbah, Carl Nassib, Jamie Collins and Christian Kirksey will actively blitz Flacco and limit his production. Ravens rookie cornerback Marlon Humphrey will wreak havoc on the Browns passing game.
Cleveland 17 Baltimore 16.
Browns injury Report
Myles Garrett-ankle- out
T.Y. McGill- back-out
Caleb Brantley- finger- unknown
Kenny Britt- knee- unknown
Danny Shelton-knee- unknown
Randy Telfer- knee- unknown
Joe Thomas- knee- unknown
Kevin Zeitler- thumb- unknown
Ravens injury report
Jaylen Hill- thigh- out
Sheldon Price- concussion- out
Za’Darius Smith- knee, ankle- out
Eric Weddle- illness- unknown
Tim Williams-illness- questionable
Danny Woodhead- thigh- unknown