Cleveland Browns: 3 early season games that will set tone for 2022

Browns, Nick Chubb
Browns, Nick Chubb /
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Cleveland Browns
Sep 19, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Browns defensive back Ronnie Harrison (33) and outside linebacker Malcolm Smith (56) and strong safety John Johnson (43) celebrate after Smith intercepted a pass against the Houston Texans during the second half at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /

The Cleveland Browns have several early games this season that they need to win to set the right tone for a successful season

The Cleveland Browns got their schedule this week for the upcoming season. The guessing games now have commenced and predictions on the season and records are coming out left and right.

The Browns begin their season with a road trip to Charlotte to face the Carolina Panthers. Let’s just start with this game for a moment and explain why this game is in essence a monumental moment for Cleveland and has high importance for the rest of the season.

I’m already seeing many local analysts and fans of the team giving the Browns the “W” against the Panthers. I have to stop all of you there. Either fans and analysts have memory loss or somehow think that this team is a Super Bowl contender in week one.

Cleveland has a 1-21-1 record since the team returned to the NFL in 1999. They haven’t won a season opener since 2004. Some of you who are reading this weren’t even born yet.

Last season Cleveland got a rematch with the Kansas City Chiefs after both teams played a nailbiter in the 2020 AFC Divisional Playoff Game. It was another close game but, in the end, the Browns continued their losing ways in season openers. Back in 2018, the Browns played the Pittsburgh Steelers in a game where Cleveland, forced six turnovers and though the game wasn’t a loss, as the two squads ended the game in a tie, it still wasn’t a win.

The point of all of this reminiscing is that before you all write in an automatic win for the Browns the chances are statistically not in their favor based on their track record.

Certainly, the Browns will have the better team on paper, but the game is at Charlotte, and winning on the road for any team can be tough. If Cleveland pulls off the victory, then there will likely be more excitement for this team than at any other time.

However, the season is a marathon and can be a challenge especially when you get to December. Before we get there let’s look at three other early-season games that will certainly set the tone for the rest of the season.