Believe it or not, both the Miami Dolphins (2-8) and Browns (4-6) come in this game with two-game win streaks. At the risk of being overdramatic, something’s gotta give in this 1 p.m. showdown!
With that in mind, let’s have a look at what’s in store for us:
The Visiting Dolphins:
Clearly, Miami has had a pretty forgettable season. The last two weeks have been pretty nice, featuring a home win against the Jets and an upset road victory against the Colts. But, at 2-8 and having sold the farm already, the Dolphins have never had any sort of illusions about making the playoffs.
Ryan Fitzpatrick, renowned journeyman, has done a good job doing exactly what the Dolphins need him to do – end the season as mercifully and quickly as possible. To that end, Fitzpatrick has done a decent job. He currently has a completion percentage of 63.2%, with 1687 passing yards and an even 8:8 TD:INT ratio. Considering his age and how utterly devoid of talent on that side of the ball Miami is, that’s not too bad.
Currently, the Dolphins sport a pretty healthy team. Starting cornerback Ken Webster (Ankle) is listed as Doubtful on the team’s website. Aside from that, the Dolphins don’t factor to miss any notable names on Sunday’s game.
At 2-8, it’s clear that the players wants to win- it’s just that the front office does not. The Dolphins do ride a two game win streak, and will look to make that three this weekend.
The Hometown Browns:
Amidst the massive amounts of drama and controversy, it is easy to forget (somehow) that the Browns are coming off a primetime whooping of the hated Pittsburgh Steelers, 21-7. This should-be uplifting win brought the Browns up to 4-6, on a two game winning streak. Sadly, it may be a day late, dollar short, to resuscitate the Browns’ season with the stiff competition for Wild Card spots in the AFC.
Baker Mayfield has had a pretty smooth last three weeks after an underwhelming first half of the season. Over the last three games, he has thrown for 704 yards, a clean 5:0 TD:INT ratio with no turnovers, and has an average QBR of right around 95. They aren’t brilliant numbers for a three-game stretch by any means, but it’s encouraging to see Mayfield overcome the pitiful display that is Freddie Kitchens and his horrible overall coaching.
Unless you live under a rock (and frankly, even if you do) you should well know by now that Myles Garrett (suspension) and Larry Ogunjobi (suspension) will be watching this game from their couch at home. Beyond that, Olivier Vernon (Knee) has already been ruled out, and Eric Murray (Knee) looks rather shaky with regards to being able to suit up. While their statuses for the game don’t appear to be in danger, it is worth noting that Odell Beckham Jr. (Groin) and Joel Bitonio (Groin) were limited in practice this week, meaning they may be a bit banged up themselves.
Any given Sunday, right?
Well, the Browns need “any” to be “the next six Sundays” if they want so much as a fraction of a shot at making the playoffs. And it all starts with taking care of business against the Dolphins this Sunday.