3 potential trap games on the 2023 Cleveland Browns schedule
By Randy Gurzi
No. 1: Houston Texans at Cleveland Browns, Week 16
Even with a couple of bold moves in the 2023 NFL Draft, the Houston Texans shouldn't be able to knock off the Browns. Right now, Cleveland simply has the superior team. They're better in the trenches, at skill positions, and even under center — and they beat them easily in 2022 with Deshaun Watson showing signs of major rust.
Having said that, the Texans did add a lot of talent this offseason. Under center, they'll be turning to Ohio State product C.J. Stroud — who they took at No. 2 overall. He has some new weapons as well with Dalton Schultz, Robert Woods, and Tank Dell joining this year. Plus 2022 second-round pick John Metchie is expected to return as well.
On defense, they added Will Anderson after trading up to No. 3, making the second and third picks in this draft. Anderson joins Jimmie Ward, Sheldon Rankins, and Denzel Perryman on a defense that will be led by DeMeco Ryans.
All of that being said, Cleveland should still be able to win this season but they can't go in expecting it to be easy. They also can't afford to look past them on this Christmas Eve meeting with the New York Jets coming to town on Thursday night the following week.
Should they be guilty of this, it could turn out to be a dogfight, especially given Ryans' track record as a defensive coach with the San Francisco 49ers.