After an absolutely abysmal showing on Monday Night Football against the San Francisco 49ers, the Browns return to Cleveland Sunday for a meeting with the red-hot Russell Wilson and the 4-1 Seattle Seahawks. It will be the Browns’ last game before their bye week. With that, let’s see how they’ll stack up, attempting to head into the intermission at .500:
The Hometown Browns:
The Browns were absolutely humiliated against the 49ers Monday, getting blown out hard by a score of 31-3. Fortunately, their heavily depleted secondary could be ripe for a bit of blossoming, as it seems like cornerbacks Denzel Ward and Greedy Williams are finally set to return from their nagging hamstring injuries. They have been limited at practice and have yet to be ruled either way, but participation, of some sort, is encouraging. Similarly, Baker Mayfield’s favorite target in Rashard Higgins is seemingly a lock to return this week off a knee injury that has kept him out since Week 1.
The Browns will head into their bye week after this game, before going through a road trip heading into New England and Denver, to face old rival Joe Flacco once again. At a mere 2-3 record, this game will be crucial in boding for their playoff hopes this year.
The Visiting Seahawks:
The Seahawks have had a bit of time to rest and prepare for this game, as they were last in action in Week 5’s Thursday night game. In that game, the team took a heart-stopping, down-to-the-wire win against the Rams by a score of 30-29, barely surviving on an uncharacteristic Greg Zuerline missed field goal as time expired. That win has really given the team wings, surging their record to 4-1 and keeping them well in the thick of the playoff hunt. They’ve been led by potential MVP candidate Russell Wilson, who has a stellar 73% completion percentage along with 1,409 passing yards, 130 rushing yards and a stellar 12:1 TD:INT ratio. Chris Carson has been the team’s leading rusher this season, piling up 380 yards with a score thus far.
The Seahawks do have a couple of notable names on their injury report. The aforementioned Chris Carson has been limited in practice this week with a shoulder injury, though there hasn’t been a peep about him even having a small chance of missing this weekend’s game. His big men upfront might have trouble suiting up, though, as Pro Bowl tackle Duane Brown (Biceps) and guard DJ Fluker (Hamstring) have been unable to practice this week.
After this weekend, the Seahawks will take on the Ravens at home, travel to Atlanta and then host the Buccaneers. All of those are very winnable games, meaning that a win this weekend would greatly boost Seattle’s playoff chances, as division winner or a wild card. It will give them a lot of momentum moving forward.