The Cleveland Browns started this 2023 season off on a big high note as they pummeled the Cincinnati Bengals 24-3 last Sunday. The dominating performance, especially by its defense will be talked about for years ahead because it was something we’ve not seen in these parts for probably 30-plus years.
Now the Browns will travel to Pittsburgh to play the Steelers under the lights of Monday Night Football. The team hasn’t won there since their big 2020 playoff win. It will be a tall task, but you already get the sense that this current Browns team could be something very special. They will need several things to go their way on Monday night to secure a victory, but that win is certainly possible.
No. 1 key for Browns victory against Steelers: “D” continues its dominating play
Cleveland tore the heart out of the Cincinnati Bengals last week. The Bengals only totaled 143 yards of offense and six first downs. They only converted on two third downs and had seven series of “three and out.” All game long the Browns players on defense were celebrating and really embarrassing the Bengals.
Myles really hit the center with the crossover hesi 😵💫😵💫😵💫 pic.twitter.com/a094ix0px8
— ESPN Cleveland (@ESPNCleveland) September 11, 2023
Cleveland’s best defender Myles Garrett was seen multiple times just toying with various Cincinnati linemen as he dared them to guard him as he went after the Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow. The most dominating play on the afternoon was when Garrett stormed into the Bengals backfield and sacked Burrow on a 4th and 2, truly ripping the Cincinnati team’s heart out of them.
While the Browns were destroying the Bengals on Sunday, the Pittsburgh Steelers were getting destroyed by the San Francisco 49ers by a score of 30-7. Now these two AFC foes will do battle on Monday night.
If Cleveland can keep up their confident play on defense, then this could spell “Victory” again for the team.
No. 2 key for Browns victory against Steelers: Run game runs wild!
Having running back Nick Chubb leading your team to victory is a nice advantage that the Browns have over the rest of the NFL. He started his season like he finished his last season by running well in the game against the Bengals. He finished by gaining 106 yards on 18 carries. His teammate Jerome Ford got the ball 15 times and gained 36 yards. And let us not forget either that the Browns have quarterback Deshaun Watson, who can do a little running of his own. He scrambled for 45 yards including a beautiful 13-yard burst to the endzone for a Cleveland touchdown.
If this run game can get similar production on Monday, then the Browns will be in an excellent position to beat Pittsburgh. The Steelers were shredded by the San Francisco run game a week ago. They gave up 188 yards on the ground. Their running back Christian McCaffrey ran wild tallying 152 yards and scoring a touchdown. The 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy had three carries for 20 yards. This all bodes well for the Browns chances on Monday.
No. 3 key for Browns victory against Steelers: Deshaun Watson has a better passing game
Last Sunday, Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson had a decent game overall, but many of his passes, especially early on were a bit off. He was throwing several passes into the ground and just wasn’t accurate.
The weather definitely played a factor in how he threw the ball. It was a horrible weather day where there was a steady drizzle for much of the game. I was at the stadium and can confirm that bad weather day report. I’m still drying out.
If Watson can be a bit more accurate on Monday, then his team will likely win the game. He certainly played with more confidence in this past game. There was a lot of chatter coming into this contest about whether the rusty play he showed in the last six games of last season would carry over to this year. It didn’t look or feel that way this past Sunday. With a more confident Watson leading the Browns charge this season the rest of the NFL should be on notice that this team is on the rise and will be a difficult out for any opposing team.
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