FanSided named five NFL teams that can’t afford to lose in Week 3 and the Cleveland Browns made the list as they host the Chicago Bears
It’s never good to call a Week 3 contest a must-win, but is that what the Cleveland Browns are facing?
According to Josie Rohach of FanSided, that might just be what this club is facing as they host the Chicago Bears in Week 3.
While many do expect them to win the game, Rohach points out that the Browns are still facing questions — and that a loss could place them in the dreaded “pretenders” conversation. However, a win puts them at 2-1 and sets them up nicely for the road ahead of them.
"“Winning their contest against the Chicago Bears is crucial for Cleveland to silence everyone putting them in the ‘pretenders’ conversation. The Bears seem to be an incredibly average 1-1 team. The kind of team that top 10 teams need to beat with conviction. With rookie Justin Fields making his starting debut following a very questionable performance last week, the Browns need to take advantage of his inexperience and dominate on both sides of the ball.” — Rohach, FanSided"
Cleveland was in a similar spot last week when they hosted the Houston Texans. After losing a late lead over the Kansas City Chiefs to fall to 0-1, they needed to avoid falling into the proverbial trap game against an inferior Houston team.
When the game started, it looked as if things could get away from the Browns. They took an early 7-0 lead but then had no answers for Tyrod Taylor as the Texans jumped ahead 14-7 in the blink of an eye.
The Browns dominated from that point on, but a large part of that was an injury suffered by Taylor. Before he went down, the defense had absolutely no answers for his ability to scramble. That’s worrisome considering the Bears will be starting Justin Fields who may be a rookie, but he’s much more mobile than Taylor.
Cleveland is favored in this one and they should be able to win and improve to 2-1. The only real concern is how the defense will fare against a dual-threat such as Fields. If they can contain him, for the most part, this should be a win and they can begin to prepare for the Minnesota Vikings while looking for a 3-1 start. If not, they will be answering a ton of questions about their roster.
As Rohach stated, this is a big opportunity in front of them and they cannot afford to let it slip through their fingers.