The Browns are set to take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this week in Cleveland, and this matchup is set to be an interesting one.
With a game start time of 1pm FOX will have the broadcast covered.
Browns TE Jordan Cameron has been ruled OUT (concussion).
The Browns are looking to go 4-1 at home for the first time since 2007 and with Brian Hoyer (7-3 as starter) of the Browns they could very well notch another win for the season. Hoyer is 5-1 at FirstEnergy Stadium. Additionally if you want to try your luck with the Browns continuing their strong showing on their home field, we recommend taking them and their -6.5 spread. You can bet now on the Browns and see the latest odds here.
It will be very important for the Browns to not look past the Bucs however, while their win/loss percentage isn’t something to brag about, they do have the talent on their roster that could pull off an upset win in Cleveland if the Browns don’t show up prepared. One only needs to look back at the Oct. 19th game against the Jaguars for an example. While the Bucs have been having some difficulty rushing the ball, the Jaguars also had the same issues. The Jaguars however, caught the Browns by surprise ultimately beating them 24-6. Did the Browns learn from that game?
“When we took Jacksonville for granted you saw what happened,” said linebacker Jabaal Sheard. “This is the NFL. Every team is good. You’ve got to go out there early and smack them in the mouth and let them know what type of game it’s going to be.”
Linebacker Paul Kruger wanted to add his thoughts about the game as well; “when you take things for granted it seems to bite you in the tail,” Kruger said. “We’re just looking to improve in that area [run defense] and playing overall good defense. We’ve made strides the past couple of weeks, and if we can continue to do that we can put our offense in nice spots.”
Sunday the Browns will see a familiar face in former teammate Bobby Rainey.
Rainey can generate speed quickly, and can be shifty at times which can make him difficult to tackle or chase down if he gets into open field. The key will be to contain him and not allow him to break through the line.
“He’s a really talented guy,” Kruger said in his interview with Cleveland.com. “He’s extremely shifty and quick. He reminds me of Ray Rice or a Maurice Jones-Drew type of guy. We respect his game and we’ll be watching out for him.”
They’ll need to watch out for him. You can bet your money that Rainey is playing with a little bit of a chip on his shoulder as he is out to prove himself, especially to his former team.
“That transition from team to team can create a lot of competitive spirit within yourself because you really want to prove that you’re the type of player that should be on a roster, and stay on a roster,” Kruger said.
The Browns’ opponents this season have gone 21-33. That .389 winning percentage is the worst in the league. However, as Sheard stated above, “this is the NFL. Every team is good” and Tampa Bay could prove to be just as challenging as any opponent they have faced so far this season.
The Browns have allowed 143.4 yards per game which ranks them 30th in the league. Cleveland’s defensive front 7 are going to have to contain Rainey and the running game in order to force the Bucs to throw which they also don’t do so well.
After starting the season off with Josh McCown as the starter under center, the Buccaneers were forced to opt to Mike Glennon because of injury, but Glennon has only been slightly better. If the Browns can contain the running game and get some pressure to Glennon, they could set the tone early in the game and run away with another win at home. However, the Buccaneers nearly defeated the New Orleans Saints and it’s hard to overlook the amount of talent that Tampa Bay possesses on their roster.
Many thought the Browns-coming into the season-would be lucky to win four games total, however, due to excellent coaching and the emergence of some key players, the Browns have already reached the four-win expectation and appear ready for a winning streak. Brian Hoyer has been a very effective game-manager at quarterback for Cleveland, and he has shown at times that he can put the team on his shoulders when it matters most. Hoyer, along with a defense that has played very well so far, provides great optimism for this weeks matchup versus Tampa Bay.
Notable prediction from FanSided:
“The Browns have simply been the better team this season and they’re playing at home. Final Score: Browns: 20, Buccaneers 10.”