Cleveland hosts the Bills this week with a wild card spot on the line. Good to have meaningful football on the North Coast in December again!
It certainly has been a long time since a December game in Cleveland had playoff implications for both teams. Not since the Kelly Holcomb led Browns have we even sniffed a December to remember. That is about to change.
The Buffalo Bills come to town with a chance to get back to the playoffs themselves, but they will have to leapfrog the Browns for the last wild card slot. A win this Sunday would certainly help them in that leap. They will have to beat a motivated Cleveland team to do it. The Browns have the playoffs in their sight. They can nearly taste it. But they realize that without this game it will be an uphill battle. Browns quotes to follow.
”We are in the playoffs right now,” Lewis said. ”We will just focus on the next win.”
”We all know we have work to do,” Jurevicius said. ”In the NFL, it doesn’t matter how you get a win. We’re learning. We’re still a young team. We’re doing some things to slow us down, but ultimately we’re capitalizing. That’s a sign we’re maturing and getting a little bit better.”
The majority of the reports and previews I’ve seen give the edge to the Browns this week. According to Scout’s Inc the Browns have the advantage in QB, WR, OL, and LB. They gave the Bills the edge in RB, DL, DB, ST (How is that possible?) and Coaching. They had this to say-
Both teams are banged up and missing some players, but are very evenly matched in the Scouts Inc. Advantage. Both clubs have lots to play for as the winner will control their own destiny in making the postseason. The Browns’ offense has been one of the more explosive in the league while their defense struggles to keep opponents out of the end zone.
Buffalo doesn’t light up the score board, but is judicious with the ball and plays solid defense. Both teams have excellent returners in the kicking game and this is likely to be a big part of the outcome. We really like this overachieving Bills club, but with the Browns playing on their own turf it will be tough to get a road win. This is going to be close down the stretch and if there is inclement weather it should favor the visitors, but Cleveland is likely to solidify a wild-card spot at the end of the day.
Let’s hope the experts are right about this one. Go Browns!