Browns Vs. Ravens: 5 Reasons For Optimism

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Nov 3, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith (82) is tackled by Cleveland Browns cornerback Joe Haden (23) in the fourth quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Browns face off against the rival Baltimore Ravens on Sunday. Both teams come in at 1 – 1 with the Ravens beating the Steelers, the same team the Browns lost to. The game is huge early in the division. One team will try to stay within reach of the unbeaten Cincinnati Bengals. Today we are going to look at reasons for optimism and pessimism, but of course we will start with the positives of Browns Vs. Ravens. (You can jump through the slide show using your arrow keys):

Perfect Setup

The Browns are coming off a win against the Saints at home. They return home where the crowd will be loud. A Browns team playing with some confidence is somewhat of an unknown but generally teams play better when they feel good about themselves. The Browns will also have 2 starters possibly returning, Jordan Cameron and Barkevious Mingo, which will just increase their confidence going into the game.

Having a home field advantage is something of days past for the team but the combination of off the field entertainment and a competitive team showed that can change quickly. The defense fed off of the energy and it caused problems for the normally cool under pressure Drew Brees last week. This week Joe Cool, Joe Flacco, comes to town. How much can the noise, and the defense, get to Flacco? With Mike Pettine’s creative defense disrupting the QB from making line calls and audibles is a huge advantage.

For the Ravens last week seemed like a week they may falter. Remember that they were playing the Thursday Night game shortly after the Ray Rice video surfaced on Monday and the ensuing storm. Rice was set to return this week against the Browns. He instead sits suspended and with no team after the Ravens cut him. While the Ravens had some extra time to rest, a good thing for an aging team, the extra time could mean more time to think about the Rice situation.

Besides the extra rest for the Ravens this game is the perfect setup for the Browns. The Ravens bonded last week and the game was a place of respite. This week could be when everything comes due from a chaotic, hectic start to the season for the team.