Cleveland is coming off an upset of its arch rival, the Pittsburgh Steelers, while Oakland is in the midst of a four-game losing streak. The only saving grace is the Raiders are at home against a team that is winless on the road. With all the struggles the Raiders have on and off the field, winning won’t be an easy task, but this is the best chance at a win they’ve had in awhile.
The Browns are not overly productive on offense, ranking 23rd in passing offense and 26th in rushing offense in the NFL. The star of the offense is clearly Trent Richardson and his 755 rushing yards this season. Richardson can be a game changer and it will be crucial for Oakland to shut him down. Brandon Weeden is having an up and down year with more than 2,400 yards passing and 12 touchdown passes to go along with 13 interceptions. Cleveland does not have many great options receiving, with Josh Gordon and Greg Little being its top-two targets, so expect a lot of running plays especially after the Raiders’ performance last week against the ground game.
Defensively, the Browns are a little more solid ranking 21st in the league against the pass and 19th against the run. The Raiders have to keep an eye on D’Qwell Jackson, who is the Browns’ biggest playmaker on defense. He leads the team with 84 tackles and also has two picks and three sacks. Carson Palmer should try and avoid Joe Haden at all costs, so expect a big game from Brandon Myers. This week will also test the offensive line as the Browns have four players with three or more sacks and most of them have been for large losses.
Overall, this looks to be a winnable game for Oakland, but you never know which Raiders’ team will show up on Sunday.