The (0-1) Cleveland Browns travel to Baltimore to take on the (1-0) Ravens. Last week the Browns lost to the Steelers 21-18. The Ravens defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 20-0. In their game against the Bengals the Ravens forced five turnovers, so going into week two the Browns will need to limit the turnovers.
Browns Offense vs Ravens Defense:
The Browns offensive line has to do a better job run blocking this week. Isaiah Crowell couldn't get separation last week and only rushed for 33 yards on 17 carries. That has to improve going forward. Hue Jackson isn't too worried about it, but with a rookie quarterback, you don't want to throw the ball more than you have too. And with the Ravens' pass rush lead by future hall of famer Terrell Suggs the Browns need to keep the Ravens honest with the run game.
The last thought on the offense is DeShone Kizer. He's going up against another extremely physical defense. It wouldn't be surprising if we see a couple late hits on the quarterback call like we did last week. Kizer has to play smart. Throw the ball away if nothing is open down field, slide while scrambling, and remembering that the check down is your friend.
Browns Defense vs Ravens Offense:
And the running game for the Ravens will be their strength. Former Brown Terrance West ran for 80 yards on 19 carries and Javorius Allen rushed for 71 yards on 21 carries. While having success last week against the Bengals, it isn't a for gone conclusion they will have success this week. The Browns limited the Steelers to 35 yards on the ground. Le'Veon Bell ran for 32 of the 35 on 10 rushes. The Browns defense is for real. And the key for them is to limit the running game and force Joe Flacco into turnovers...which is basically the key for the Raven's defense against the Browns offense.
Five Guys to Watch:
Duke Johnson: As I mentioned above, it's going to be interesting to see how Hue Jackson uses Johnson week-to-week. I wouldn't be surprised if we see him get 10-12 carries this week and a couple of catches, but this time lined up in the backfield where he's more comfortable.
DeShone Kizer: Kizer will be on this list every week. Its that simple. Kizer is potentially the quarterback of the future...so how can he not be one of the five guys to watch each week.
Ricardo Louis: Louis had a pretty good game last week. Yes, he only had two catches. But he was getting open and that's all you can ask for on a team with a lack of playmakers at wide receiver. Louis even came back last week from a nasty hit and caught a pass that put the Browns into scoring position.
Betting Line (As of 9/14/17): Baltimore -8
Prediction: Browns 24 Ravens 17
Call me crazy but I think the Browns will leave Baltimore with a 1-1 record. Kizer proved in one game that he gives the Browns an opportunity to win and that's all you can ask for with a rookie quarterback. But the Defense for the Browns will win this game. They will force the Ravens into turnovers and give the offense a short field. The running game for the Browns should be improved from last week which is why when they are given the lead they won't blow it like in years before.