The Cleveland Browns: Previewing the rest of the way

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AP Photo/David Richard

“Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) reacts during the first half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020, in Cleveland.” (AP Photo/David Richard)

Jack O'Rourke, Staff Reporter

A Herculean defensive effort from the Browns’ running back duo of Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt led to a 10-7 win over a sneakily-good Houston Texans team this past Sunday. Now, Cleveland’s football team is one of six AFC teams that hold a 6-3 record. 

The Browns will likely need to win at least four of their seven remaining games to make the playoffs, which is doable. How so? We broke down the Browns’ remaining weekly opponents and now present our game predictions. 

WEEK 11

“Philadelphia Eagles’ Carson Wentz (11) leaves the field after an NFL football game against the New York Giants, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020, in East Rutherford, N.J.” (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

The 3-5-1 Philadelphia Eagles will come to town next Sunday and bring a question mark of a season with them. The favorites to win the NFC East have played closely contested games with top teams from the AFC, like the Steelers and Ravens, but they have had head-scratching losses to their downtrodden division rivals, the Washington Football Team and Giants. The Eagles narrowly defeated the Giants and have two wins against heavily depleted teams, like the Cowboys and 49ers, to round out their win column. The story of the game will be the play of Eagles signal-caller Carson Wentz, who has thrown for 12 touchdowns but also 12 interceptions. He has had a Jekyll-Hyde season, and the Browns should be able to overcome whichever Wentz shows up to FirstEnergy Stadium. 

JOHN CARROLL PICKS VERSUS EAGLES:

Kyle Kelly, Sports Editor: Browns

Jack O’Rourke, Staff Reporter: Browns

Jasen Sokol, Director, WJCU 88.7: Browns

Joe Ginley, Sports Information Director: Browns

WEEK 12

“Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew II (15) postgame in the NFL game against the Denver Broncos in Denver Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019.” (Eric Bakke via AP) (Eric Bakke via AP)

The battle of the mustache-mullet combo between Baker Mayfield and Gardiner Minshew will rage on at TIAA Bank Field as the Browns will take on the 1-8 Jaguars. The big storyline will be former Browns player Joe Schoebert’s first contest against his old team. 

JOHN CARROLL PICKS VERSUS JAGUARS:

Kyle Kelly, Sports Editor: Browns

Jack O’Rourke, Staff Reporter: Browns

Jasen Sokol, Director, WJCU 88.7: Browns

Joe Ginley, Sports Information Director: Browns

WEEK 13

“Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry carries the ball against the Indianapolis Colts in the first half of an NFL football game Thursday, Nov. 12, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn.” (AP Photo/Wade Payne) (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

Arguably the Browns’ biggest remaining game will take place in a face-off against a second straight AFC South opponent. Derrick Henry and Ryan Tannehill lead a potent Tennessee offense. So far, the Titans’ biggest win of the season was a 42-16 drubbing of the AFC East’s first-place team, the Buffalo Bills. The Titans have lost three of their last four games entering Week 11, but big matchups against the Colts and Ravens await the Titans before Cleveland enters town. If the Titans manage to win their next two games, they will sit at 8-3 and be a frontrunner to win the AFC South.

JOHN CARROLL PICKS VERSUS TITANS:

Kyle Kelly, Sports Editor: Titans

Jack O’Rourke, Staff Reporter: Titans

Jasen Sokol, Director, WJCU 88.7: Titans

Joe Ginley, Sports Information Director: Titans

WEEK 14

“Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson, left, tries to elude New England Patriots defensive end John Simon in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020, in Foxborough, Mass.” (AP Photo/Charles Krupa) (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

For the first time since 2015, the Browns will host “Monday Night Football.” On that fateful day in November of 2015, the Browns had a last-second field goal attempt to win blocked, and Ravens defender Will Hill ran back the loose football for a touchdown as the Ravens stunned the Browns. While the compositions of the rosters are different, the same teams will meet again this season. Lamar Jackson and the Ravens handed the Browns a 32-point loss to begin this season. The Ravens and Browns both currently hold 6-3 records, so this game may be a big factor in the AFC playoff picture, just as the Titans game could be. While success on the field isn’t guaranteed, this will be a fun Monday in Cleveland. 

JOHN CARROLL PICKS VERSUS RAVENS:

Kyle Kelly, Sports Editor: Ravens

Jack O’Rourke, Staff Reporter: Ravens

Jasen Sokol, Director, WJCU 88.7: Browns

Joe Ginley, Sports Information Director: Ravens

WEEK 15

“New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) passing the ball in first half of an NFL football game between against the Washington Football Team, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020, in Landover, Md.” (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Despite a two-game win streak at the hands of the Eagles and WFT, the Giants should not pose much of a problem against the Browns. The keyword of course: SHOULD. Subpar quarterback play and injuries have plagued a Giants team that already has a lackluster defense. The first of two consecutive trips to MetLife Stadium will be harder than the second but still should be handled by a team that is a playoff contender. 

JOHN CARROLL PICKS VERSUS GIANTS:

Kyle Kelly, Sports Editor: Browns

Jack O’Rourke, Staff Reporter: Giants

Jasen Sokol, Director, WJCU 88.7: Browns

Joe Ginley, Sports Information Director: Browns

WEEK 16

“New York Jets head coach Adam Gase reacts during an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Oct. 11, 2020, in East Rutherford, N.J. From the unbeaten Steelers at the top to the winless Jets at the bottom, predictability has taken a hike halfway through NFL 2020.” (AP Photo/Adam Hunger) (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)

The Jets stink. #TankForTrevor is in full force for the J-E-T-S- JETS JETS JETS. If the Browns falter here, they will likely be the only win for the Jets this season. 

JOHN CARROLL PICKS VERSUS JETS:

Kyle Kelly, Sports Editor: Browns

Jack O’Rourke, Staff Reporter: Browns

Jasen Sokol, Director, WJCU 88.7: Browns

Joe Ginley, Sports Information Director: Browns

WEEK 17

“Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool (11) catches a pass for a short gain in the second half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys in Arlington, Texas, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020.” (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)

The regular season finale is set for Jan. 3 against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The currently undefeated Steelers will waltz into Cleveland. Important to note: the Steelers may be resting players by the time this game rolls around.

JOHN CARROLL PICKS VERSUS STEELERS:

Kyle Kelly, Sports Editor: Browns

Jack O’Rourke, Staff Reporter: Browns

Jasen Sokol, Director, WJCU 88.7: Browns

Joe Ginley, Sports Information Director: Steelers

Browns Record and Playoff Hopes:

“Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb (24) rushes for a 9-yard touchdown during the second half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020, in Cleveland.”(AP Photo/Ron Schwane) (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

Kyle Kelly, Sports Editor: Browns finish 11-5 and are the first team to miss the playoffs. 

Jack O’Rourke, Staff Reporter: Browns finish 10-6 and are eliminated in the AFC Wild Card Round by the Steelers.

Jasen Sokol, Director, WJCU 88.7: Browns: Browns finish 12-4 and win in the AFC Wild Card Round but lose in the AFC Divisional Championship Round. 

Joe Ginley, Sports Information Director: Browns finish 10-6 and win in the AFC Wild Card Round but lose in the AFC Divisional Championship Round.