Cleveland Browns: 3 bold predictions in matchup against Washington
Cleveland Browns bold prediction No. 1: Defense will shut down Carson Wentz
It was announced earlier this week that Carson Wentz would get the start as quarterback against the Browns instead of Taylor Heinicke who had been starting for the Commodores recently. Cleveland has faced Wentz twice in his career and has a 1-1 record against the former No. 2 overall pick from the 2016 NFL Draft.
Cleveland opened that 2016 season against Wentz and the Eagles and was beaten soundly 29-10. Wentz went on to have a great rookie campaign while the Browns were a terrible team that season and finished with a 1-15 record.
The Browns faced the Eagles and Wentz again in 2020 and in that game, Cleveland had the upper hand against Wentz as they rattled him all game long. Their defense sacked him five times and Wentz threw two interceptions. One of the Browns’ sacks included a safety and one of the interceptions was run back for a touchdown by linebacker Sione Takitaki.
This season with the Commanders, Wentz hasn’t been good as he recorded a 2-4 record with 11 touchdowns and six interceptions before he injured his finger in October and was placed on IR. He was sacked 23 times in only those first six games as well. In an early season loss to his former team the Eagles, Wentz was sacked an unbelievable nine times and he’s been sacked more than three times in three more games before he was sidelined with that injury.
Cleveland’s defense could make a statement again in this game if they’re able to tee off on Wentz. I’d look for the secondary and players like Martin Emerson, Grant Delpit, and Denzal Ward to try and steal a few pass attempts. We could also see defensive linemen like Myles Garrett and Alex Wright get into that backfield and create problems for Wentz.
While the Washington team is still standing at 7-7 and a potential playoff spot, I see the Browns playing more freely on defense and knowing they could have a field day against the former No. 1 draft pick.