4 ways the NFL screwed the Cleveland Browns with 2024 schedule

The NFL never does the Browns any favors
Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns / Jason Miller/GettyImages

The NFL schedule was released on Wednesday and while the Cleveland Browns scored a win with their social media video release, they might have been screwed by the league.

Last year, that was the case when they gave them an obnoxiously early bye week. This year, they get a solid break in Week 10 but there are several other questionable decisions by the league.

Let's dive into their schedule and identify four ways the Browns were hosed.

Gauntlet prior to bye week

Yes, the bye week will be nice but the Browns get put through the wringer before then. From Weeks 6-9, they face the Philadelphia Eagles, Cincinnati Bengals, Baltimore Ravens, and Los Angeles Chargers. The first three teams had winning records in 2023, including the Bengals who were 9-8 despite being without Joe Burrow for much of the season.

L.A. was just 5-12 but they were without Justin Herbert for four games, all of which were losses. And they had two winning seasons in a row prior to that campaign. Throw in the hiring of Jim Harbaugh and that could be as tough as any game on the schedule.

AFC North-heavy finish

Last year, three of the first four games were AFC North showdowns. This year, it's flipped as four of the final seven games are against AFC North rivals. Cleveland will take on the Steelers in Week 12 and Week 14, the Bengals in Week 16, and the Ravens in Week 18. They could use this to their advantage if they win all four games but this division is so tough that we know that's not likely.

Barrage of playoff teams to close out the season

Not only is it rival-heavy, but the final stretch for the Browns will be a massive test. Six of their final seven games are against playoff teams with the only exception being the Week 13 meeting with the Denver Broncos.

Yes, their schedule is the toughest in the league so we knew there would be tough stretches. But closing with the Kansas City Chiefs, Cincinnati Bengals, Miami Dolphins, and Baltimore Ravens feels like a bit much. That's a total of four MVPs, three Super Bowl wins, and five recent Super Bowl appearances to close out the season. Throw in the fact that Baltimore is the defending No. 1 seed and Miami had the No. 1 offense and it looks even worse.

Staying away from home following opener

Cleveland will start at home in Week 1, albeit against a tough opponent with the Dallas Cowboys coming to town. After that, however, they spend a lot of time on the road.

The Browns travel to Jacksonville in Week 2, then head back home to face the Giants in Week 3. Then, they fly to Las Vegas to face the Raiders in Week 4, to D.C. in Week 5 to face the Commanders, then head to Philly to take on the Eagles in Week 6.

Thankfully, they have a three-game home stand afterward but that's a lot of traveling early in the year.

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