Browns Week 2 Preseason Preview

Charles Clay 2015

It looks like the Browns organization is learning from past mistakes —which is a relief. Baker Mayfield was impressive in his NFL preseason debut. On just 22 touches, he threw for 212 yards and two touchdowns, going 11 for 20. But according to Ken Zampese, the Browns QB Coach, Tyrod Taylor is still their guy this season. In fact, they don’t plan on starting the No. 1 draft pick at any point during the 2018 regular season.  We should, however, see plenty of Baker Mayfield in the Browns week 2 preseason game.

A developmental year. In my humble opinion, this is a fantastic idea. Let Mayfield watch, learn, practice, and mature before throwing him to the proverbial wolves. Tyrod Taylor is in his prime. He threw for 2,800 yards last season with 14 touchdowns and just four interceptions. He is more than capable of leading the Browns this season while the future franchise man gets his feet underneath him.

The depth chart for the Bills has been released, and something crazy is happening that we haven’t seen in a long time. The Browns are listed as three-and-a-half point favorites on Friday against Buffalo. But before you go rushing off to lay a few bucks on the Dog Pound, remember to do your due diligence and check this BetOnline Review. Sports betting is rapidly legalizing, so we’ll be seeing a lot of online books stepping into the limelight.

But will the Browns beat the Bills on Friday?

Preseason football is difficult to predict. Some coaches just don’t care about winning preseason games; other coaches seem to care a lot. So, normally with predicting preseason games, I like to look at the coaches’ records, not the current team they are with. This is because coaches tend to have very firm preseason trends like they always win in Week 1 and Week 4 and always lose in Week 2 and 3. That is obviously just a random example, but you get my point.

The problem with these two coaches is that they essentially have a fresh slate as head coaches. Hue Jackson was running the Raiders in 2011 and in Week 2 of the preseason under his watch the Silver and Black got spanked by the 49ers 17-3. But one game is just too small of a sample size to build any sort of preseason prediction thesis.

This is Sean McDermott’s second year as a Head Coach so we again only have a one-game sample size. Last year, the Bills lost to the Eagles 16-20. But he has had an illustrious career as a Defensive Coordinator in Carolina, where he won a Super Bowl ring. The Panthers lost in preseason Week 2 in 2011 to the Fins, but then beat the Fins in Week 2 in 2012. In 2013 the Panthers lost a close one to the Eagles 9-14, then beat the Chiefs 28-16 in 2014. Beat the Dolphins 31-30 in 2015. That said, Rivera was calling the shots, and they pretty went back and forth on wins, but did McDermott pick up on this Week 2 is neither here nor there rhythm?

One thing we can be sure of is that Hue Jackson will be more focused on the offense, and Sean McDermott will be more in tune with his defense. There are more questions to be answered on the offensive side of the ball in Buffalo than there are in Cleveland. The QB race over there is still underway. So I would bet that Sean McDermott and the Bills coaches are going to be doing a lot more evaluating and changing out personnel to see who and what works and where. While on Jackson’s sideline, of course, this will be taking place … it’s preseason ball but to a lesser degree. I think he is going to go out there and let the offense ‘play’ a bit more. Which ultimately could result in a win on Friday.

Week 2 Preseason Prediction: Browns win in a close game.