Browns vs. Jets: DPD staff picks for the Week 8 matchup

Sep 13, 2015; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets wide receiver Brandon Marshall (15) runs after recovering a fumble against the Cleveland Browns during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 13, 2015; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets wide receiver Brandon Marshall (15) runs after recovering a fumble against the Cleveland Browns during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports /

The Dawg Pound Daily staff got together to share their predictions for today’s matchup between the Cleveland Browns and the New York Jets.

With all the magic surrounding Cleveland sports in 2016, the Cleveland Browns have to join the party soon. Right?

Well today may be the Browns’ best remaining shot to give fans some excitement by finally picking up a victory. The New York Jets are coming to town, led by the turnover machine known as Ryan Fitzpatrick.

We here at Dawg Pound Daily got together to share our thoughts on today’s matchup. And in a delight to some, the Browns are receiving a bit more love this week.

Jonathan Goehring (2016 record: 4-3): Browns 24, Jets 13

With Josh McCown ready to go at quarterback, the Browns will win this game. The Jets have struggled offensively all season long, and now have Ryan Fitzpatrick back at quarterback. Even the Browns undersized secondary can handle a weak New York passing attack. They will give up yards to Brandon Marshall in the middle of the field, but they won’t break down in the red zone.

At halftime, the Browns will have a 14-6 lead due to their passing game. Cleveland will struggle to run the ball, but they will take advantage of a weak Jets secondary in the red zone to finish a couple of sustained drives. Gary Barnidge will have the game of his career, breaking the 100-yard receiving mark and scoring two touchdowns.

The Browns will cruise in the second half led by a dominant pass rush, winning comfortably, but ugly. Hue Jackson and the Browns will respond to pressure to win their first game in quite possibly their final good opportunity to pull off a victory. The win won’t change many analyst’s opinions on the state of Cleveland’s organization, but it will serve the purpose of being the elusive first win that fans desperately want.

Tom Moore (2016 record: 7-0): Jets 31, Browns 17

The Cleveland Browns are currently the laughingstocks of the entire NFL.

At least that is what the national media would have you believe.

“Oh, ho, ho,” they chortle. “Those wacky Browns are just the worst thing ever.”

Sure, Cleveland is the league lone team still without a win, but are they really any worse than the Jacksonville Jaguars, Chicago Bears, San Francisco 49ers or today’s opponent, the New York Jets?

The Jets come into the game with the league’s 23rd ranked offense, led by the human turnover machine that is Ryan Fitzpatrick. The defense is a tick better, but nothing great.

The same can be said of the Browns, of course, who will return Josh McCown to the starting quarterback role with the hope that he can make it through four quarters in one piece. What’s that? Sure, a win would be nice but let’s not get ahead of ourselves here.

The Browns defense is currently on pace to give up a franchise-record amount of points this year, and even given Fitzpatrick’s generosity to opposing defenses, the Browns simply can’t stop any offense under any circumstances.

Roger Cohen (2016 record: 5-2): Jets 20, Browns 3

If Geno Smith were starting for the Jets instead of Harvard grad and renowned Browns killer Ryan Fitzpatrick, I might be tempted to jump on the Believeland bandwagon that the Browns might get off the schneid Sunday. But here’s what’s gonna’ go down:

Fitzpatrick toys with a miserable Browns secondary to convert 80 percent of his third downs, the J-E-T-S strong front seven walks over Cleveland’s depleted O-line and McCown throws a pair of hurried passes for picks before getting crushed and re-injuring his shoulder. Kevin Hogan can’t recreate his single wing magic and the Browns fall in a 20-3 snoozer.

On the bright side, fans split First Energy early to get pumped for a pivotal Tribe Game 5. Yes, Cleveland does have an October to remember…and one to forget.

Joel Cade (2016 record: 6-1): Browns 24, Jets 21

For the Browns to win this week, they must find a way to attack the Jets aggressive multiple front 3-4 defense. The Jets run a style of defense that has given the Browns’ offensive line problems all season. Conversely, the 3-4 multiple front opens itself to the possibility of the power run game’s return. If the Browns can establish the run and throw off of play-action, success may be in the cards.

On defense, the Jets have almost as many issues at quarterback as the Browns. However, they are starting Ryan Fitzpatrick again after the injury to Geno Smith. The Jets will rebound from previous bad performances. Plus, as the Browns have been historically bad, the Jets should arrive with a confidence boost knowing they are facing the Browns (sad but true). However, the Jets have lost Nick Mangold which bodes well for Danny Shelton and the front seven. If Fitzpatrick continues to struggle, the defense could limit the Jets on offense.

Overall, this may be the week people!

Steven Kubitza (2016 record: 4-3): Browns 24, Jets 20

The weather is dreary in Northeast Ohio, but it is a great time to be a Clevelander. The Indians are one win away from the World Series title and the winless Browns look to have a good shot to pick up their first win of the season today.

With Josh McCown back on offense, this offense will run its best since Week 2 of this season, when the Browns had the Ravens reeling early, only to see McCown break his collarbone.

The Browns will force Ryan Fitzpatrick to turn the ball over in the poor conditions, giving the ball to McCown, who will be efficient in the red zone.

A win may seem like a fantasy for some fans, but the Browns will finally put away the 0-16 discussion with a win today.

Matt Stevenson (2016 Record: 6-0): Jets 27, Browns 17

The Cleveland Browns begin their home stretch of the 2016 schedule this Sunday hosting the New York Jets.The Jets, who are 2-5 coming into Sunday’s matchup, have struggled thus far after expectations were set high after an impressive 2015.

Ryan Fitzpatrick gets the starting nod for the Jets and looks to get his team back on track against the winless Browns. Brandon Marshall has produced average stats but with a banged up Joe Haden playing today, he could be in for a breakout game.

The Browns have done well stuffing the run up the middle however haven’t particularly done such against on sides – something Matt Forte usually exploits. Josh McCown is back and if Gary Barnidge can get involved early the Browns might have a chance to keep it close. However, the Jets are due a big win and unfortunately the Browns are likely the team to give it to them.

Next: Josh Gordon out of rehab

Eric Szczepinski (2016 record: 4-2): Browns 24, Jets 17

Josh McCown returns and leads the Browns to their first victory of the season. Defensively, the young unit forces struggling Ryan Fitzpatrick into multiple turnovers and plays with newfound  energy in front of the home crowd to secure the win. Isaiah Crowell and Duke Johnson pace the offense with over 100 rushing yards combined to steady out the Browns offense.