Rich Eisen: 'Bengals should dominate Browns in Week 1'

AFC Championship - Cincinnati Bengals v Kansas City Chiefs
AFC Championship - Cincinnati Bengals v Kansas City Chiefs / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

With the NFL schedule being released last week, we know that the Cleveland Browns will have a season-opening home game against AFC North rival, the Cincinnati Bengals.

When Rich Eisen was asked on The Rick Eisen Show which Week 1 matchup was better between the Browns/Bengals and Raiders/Broncos, he chose the latter citing a lot of changes and the game being a toss-up and said the Bengals should win by a large margin.

That is highly disrespectful to the offseason that Andrew Berry has put together for the Browns. He has filled a lot of major holes on the roster via free agency and a pair of trades that could help change the fortunes of Cleveland in 2023.

Real quick, back to the Raiders and Broncos game. Jimmy Garoppolo replaces Derek Carr in Las Vegas while Russell Wilson returns for the Broncos. Eisen, like many others, is skeptical of Watson due to how he performed last year in six games after a 700-day layoff. Yet, Wilson had an awful 2022 campaign and is now relying on head coach Sean Payton to save his career.

Eisen went on to say that the Bengals should go on the road and "stomp on the elf man." That might not seem like a good idea for two reasons. One, that never seems to pan out well for players and teams who disrespect the opposing team's logos. Two, Joe Burrow has struggled against the Browns in five career starts going 1-4.

Cincinnati Should be the Favorites against the Browns

The Bengals are the two-time, reigning, defending AFC North champions with back-to-back AFC Championship Game appearances, including a trip to the Super Bowl. They have a loaded offense led by Burrow, Ja'Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, and Tyler Boyd.

"To be the man, you gotta beat the man!" - Ric Flair

The Browns should not be favored to win the division until they go out and prove it, but just because they aren't the favorites, doesn't mean they can't compete with anyone. Starting off the season with a win against a team like the Bengals would be a huge step in the right direction.

Guys like Eisen and many others can have all the doubts they desire in regards to how Watson will perform and what that will mean for this team. As of right now, it's just all conjecture and talking points.

3 big fixes for the Cleveland Browns defense in 2023. dark. Next

September 10 can't get here fast enough.