KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI
3:05 P.M. KICK-OFF
DANNY SHERIDAN'S LINE: CHIEFS BY 10
STADIUM AND WEATHER INFO
BROWNS POWER RANKINGS
NFL: 8th (LAST WEEK: 9th)
It was, by far, the single biggest win for the Browns since the franchise rebooted in 1999. To go on the road -- to Pittsburgh, of all places -- with your COVID-19-stricken head coach watching from his basement, and lay a 48-37 pounding on a Steelers team that tormented you for decades? Victories don’t get much more satisfying than that. Credit the entire Browns team: Given the off-the-field challenges, it would have been totally understandable if they went out quietly on Sunday night. Instead, Cleveland used its unfortunate circumstances as motivation to shock the football world. A road trip to meet the mighty Chiefs will present an even bigger challenge, but we’re in house-money territory now. This Browns' season is already a success -- might as well keep winning.
BLEACHER REPORT: 5th (LAST WEEK: 10th)
BROWNS POSITION FANTASY RANKINGS-DIVISIONAL
Quarterback: Baker Mayfield-7th
Running Backs: Nick Chubb-2nd; Kareem Hunt-4th
Wide Receivers: Jarvis Landry-10th; Rashard Higgins-16th
Tight Ends: Austin Hooper-3rd
Kickers: Cody Parkey-5th
CHIEFS FANTASY RANKINGS
Quarterback: Patrick Mahomes-1st
Running Backs: Clyde Edwards-Helaire-7th; Le'Veon Bell-10th; Darrel Williams-17th
Wide Receivers: Tyreek Hill-2nd; Sammy Watkins-15th; Demarcus Robinson-17th
Tight Ends: Travis Kelce-1st
Kickers: Harrison Butker-3rd
Chiefs Keys to Victory:
They need to execute better on offense than they did in Week 17 if they want to avoid an early exit. They also need better blocking up front from guys like LT Eric Fisher, especially in pass protection. On defense, they need to sell out to stop the run and force QB Baker Mayfield to beat them through the air. The defense is going to need to win the line of scrimmage, especially after how dominant the Browns' O-line looked against the Steelers. If Cleveland can't win the line of scrimmage, it'll be a long day when it comes to defending the run.
Browns Keys to Victory:
They need to find an equal amount of success on offense as they did in the wild-card win. Scoring 28 in the first quarter would help when you're facing the league's most explosive offense. But Cleveland need not get in a shootout. The Browns need to stick to a heavy dose of RB Nick Chubb and force Kansas City to stop the run. That'll set up opportunities over the top with the play-action passing game. Cleveland's best bet on defense is to not allow any receivers a free release o. the line of scrimmage and to leave two safeties over the top.
Browns RB Kareem Hunt vs. Chiefs LB Anthony Hitchens
Hunt will likely have something to prove against his former team. The K.C. linebacker group hasn't been great, but Hitchens has put together his best season.
Matchup to watch according to Browns Backers of North Jersey:
Browns Defensive Line vs. Chiefs Offensive Line
The Browns front four are going to need to stop the run and get after Patrick Mahomes. They are going to need to pressure him. The Browns linebackers and secondary will have enough to do guarding Travis Kelce and the Chiefs speedy receivers.
Who will win and why according to USA Today Sports Weekly:
The Chiefs have been to the divisional round in five of the past six seasons. Kansas City will lean on its experience, and that will be the difference.
Who will win and why according to Browns Backers of North Jersey:
The Browns are on a roll and they get their staff back and most of their players (fingers crossed that it stays that way). Head Coach Kevin Stefanski is a game planner. He knows what needs to be done to beat the Chiefs and move on. Look for the Browns to run the ball against a defense that really can't stop the run. The Browns will use the run to control the clock and keep the Chiefs offense off the field.
Who will win according
to Browns Backers of North Jersey President Steve Stavrenos:
2020 SEASON STANDINGS:
BROWNS BACKERS OF NORTH
BROWNS BACKERS OF NORTH JERSEY PRESIDENT STEVE STAVRENOS: 12-5
USA TODAY SPORTS WEEKLY: 11-6