3 reasons Browns will win AFC North in 2023, and 2 they won’t

The Cleveland Browns have a shot at winning the AFC North, but it won't be easy. Here are 3 reasons they can do it and 2 reasons they could fall short.
Cleveland Browns Offseason Workout
Cleveland Browns Offseason Workout / Nick Cammett/GettyImages
4 of 5

Why the Browns won't win the AFC North: Winning in the NFL is hard

Far too often fans think winning happens easily in the NFL. When a team does as the Browns have this year and shores up weaknesses, it's supposed to lead to instant success.

What they don't realize is it's hard for teams to learn how to win in the NFL. We've seen it firsthand year after year but somehow ignore it.

Take 2022 as an example. The Browns went 7-10 overall and were out of the playoffs for the second year in a row despite having a strong roster. Even with the losing record, they were just a few plays away from a successful campaign and maybe even a spot in the playoffs.

Cleveland had five losses by seven or fewer and one loss by eight to Buffalo. There were also three losses early in the season by a combined six points as they lost 31-30 to the New York Jets, 23-20 to the Atlanta Falcons, and 30-28 to the Los Angeles Chargers.

The Jets game was well in hand before a late meltdown and then Jacoby Brissett cost them a shot to knock off the Falcons when he was picked off with 1:02 to go. The following week, they should have lost again on a fourth-quarter pick from Brissett but the defense gave them new life. Then, Cade York whiffed on a 53-yard field goal.

All that being said, good teams find ways to win these games. And if the Browns pulled them off, they're sitting at 10-7 despite playing a journeyman under center.

Hopefully, the addition of Deshaun Watson changes their fortune but they have to figure out how to win the tight games rather than constantly falling apart when it matters most.