Fresh off of a dramatic, but underwhelming victory in Week 11 against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Cleveland Browns are set to take on the resurgent Denver Broncos in Week 12.
The Broncos, who started the season with three straight losses and a 1-5 record, have seemingly found their stride and have improved their record to 5-5.
As such, both teams are hot, and the Broncos are riding a four-game winning streak, while the Browns have a three-game streak of their own.
A huge part of Cleveland’s success has been their defense, led by veterans like Denzel Ward, Myles Garrett, and company.
However, the Browns will be without Ward, one of the best cornerbacks in football and a crucial member of their secondary, versus the Broncos.
As such, Browns insider Tony Grossi has questions and concerns about the Browns’ ability to force turnovers, which has been a big part of their success (via Tony Grossi on Twitter.)
Not with Ward out. https://t.co/HwxEnFE6et
— Tony Grossi (@TonyGrossi) November 24, 2023
Ward suffered a shoulder injury in Cleveland’s victory last week against the Steelers, and his status moving forward is unknown.
His absence is especially unfortunate as they take on the Broncos, who, led by Russell Wilson, have seemingly found their offensive stride.
During their four-game winning streak, Wilson has thrown for 7 touchdowns, 760 yards, and 0 interceptions.
Wilson has also had a completion percentage of at least 63% in each of those games and a QB rating of at least 99, making him one of the most efficient passers in the last month of play.
Wilson certainly seems to have found the magic he lost when he left Seattle to play in Denver just a year ago.
That presents a tall task for a secondary, minus its best player, but it’s one that defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz is no doubt prepared to handle.