With the start of the season just around the corner, the question of how far the Browns will go is on everyone’s mind. The Browns have a very minimum strength schedule leading up to the game that should be a battle in the trenches. If you remember the previous seasons, we are not friendly to the Steelers. It all started with the incident that almost cost DE Myles Garrett his career and in my mind kickstarted a huge rivalry. The Browns are looking good this season and with the addition of DE Jadeveon Clowney and a former star from my alma mater DE Curtis Weaver this season will be one for the history books.
Last year, both the Browns and the Steelers had great seasons going 11-5 and 12-4. The last time these two teams faced each other was over the wild card weekend in early January and the Browns won by putting up huge numbers and scoring 48 points to the Steelers’ 37. That game was a continued theme for the Browns with the end result going in their favor but also giving up a lot of points to the opposing team. When both teams met in the regular season last year they split both games at 1-1. The first time they met in Week 6, the Steelers held the Browns to a measly 40 yards on the ground and a piss-poor performance from Baker Mayfield only allowing him to throw for 119 yards with two interceptions and a score of 7-38.
When both teams faced off in Week 17, the Browns did a complete 180 and ended up winning even though Mayfield had another tough go of it by being held to under 200 yards passing. The running game is what held the Browns together that game and that was a big theme for the whole offense in the latter part of the season. The final time these two teams met was in the Wild Card Playoffs and that game surprised the whole league and football fans across the nation, as well. Not only did the Browns win their first playoff game in a decade or so, but to win it against a team they split the season series with, a division rival like the Steelers and recently played, was something special.
Week 8 of this season should be nothing less than an all-out battle and if the Browns can stay healthy, I think it should be the most exciting game (besides the annual battle of Ohio) on the calendar. Not only is there a recent history of violence between the two teams but also a huge divisional rivalry at play here. Last season was a great one for the whole Browns organization and Week 8 is a very pivotal game. It is the first meeting between the two teams and as long as the Browns stay healthy, this should be another W on the schedule for them.