The Cleveland Browns are coming off a disappointing blowout loss to the New England Patriots.
The Lions are coming off a 16-16 tie against the Steelers and will most likely be without starting QB Jared Goff.
To call this game a must-win would be an understatement.
The Browns have been a model for inconsistency so far in the 2021 season.
At this point, it’s hard to predict what we will see from the Browns.
Let’s take a look at our writer’s bold predictions for this Sunday’s matchup.
Writer: Wendi Oliveros
My past performance at predicting the outcome of these games is about as good as the Browns have been in 2021.
Though I am 5-5 on the season, I absolutely refuse to believe that I will get this one wrong.
The Browns are the better team, and the Lions have an inexperienced quarterback.
Nick Chubb is back.
The Lions played tough against the Steelers (and really could have won the game) so I fear this game will be a little closer than it should be.
In the end, Browns are at home and will control the line of scrimmage.
This will allow the run game to totally take over like it did many times last season and frightfully few times this season.
My Prediction: Browns 17, Lions 7
Writer: Ben Donahue
It doesn’t seem possible, but the Cleveland Browns are currently a .500 football team.
After suffering at the hands of the Patriots last Sunday, the Browns remain as one of the more baffling teams in the NFL.
One week they are world beaters, the next they are reduced to little more than a struggling Juco team.
With the Detroit Lions coming to town this week, Cleveland should approach the game with an eye toward the future.
Baker Mayfield can afford to take this game off (or multiple games) and heal.
However, with news surfacing from Berea on Thursday that he intends to play, it looks like that wish won’t happen.
The Lions are ranked 29th in offense and 31st in defense.
Quarterback Jared Goff doesn’t look like he’ll play.
Even with Goff, Detroit is not very good.
The Cleveland Browns have officially activated RB Nick Chubb off their Reserve-Covid list; he's on track to play Sunday vs. Lions. The Browns are 13-5 in Chubb's career when he rushes for over 100 yards 🤯
What does Chubb's possible return mean for your fantasy team 👀 pic.twitter.com/kHwLLOkwnQ
— DAZN Canada (@DAZN_CA) November 19, 2021
With Nick Chubb cleared from Covid protocol, one can only hope the Browns put together a good game in front of their fans.
My Prediction: Browns 35, Lions 10
Writer: Pat Opperman
New England might be one of the most surprising teams of the 2021 NFL season.
And they certainly surprised the Cleveland Browns last week.
In fact, Bill Belichick and the Patriots flat out humiliated the Browns.
And after a week of rumors and speculation, one thing is certain.
Cleveland can not afford to be surprised again this week.
In fact, nothing less than a totally dominant victory over Detroit will start the healing.
And a pair of spirited and competitive battles against the Ravens have to follow.
Nick Chubb returns in time to carry the tattered offense against the Lions.
And Kevin Stefanski and Joe Woods keep the throttle open until the game is in the bag.
My Prediction: Browns 33, Lions 9
Writer: Mark Bergin
Unless Jared Goff (oblique) somehow plays despite being listed as doubtful, the Lions will be forced to start Tim Boyle.
Both teams are dealing with several injuries, but the key is the Browns are a 13-point favorite Sunday.
It is an absolute must-win game for the Browns (5-5), especially considering the Lions are still looking for their first win of the year at 0-8-1.
Plus, the Lions will have a new kicker in Riley Patterson after the departed Ryan Santoso missed an extra point and a 48-yard field goal that would have won the game in the Week 10 overtime tie to the Steelers.
The Browns should bite off some kneecaps take care of business Sunday at home.
My Prediction: Browns 31, Lions 17
Writer: Rocco Nuosci
Nothing says “trap game” quite like a winless team coming into town.
The Cleveland Browns aren’t in a position to overlook anyone though following a rough outing last Sunday in New England.
For them, bouncing back against the Detroit Lions this week is a must.
This is a matchup where the starting quarterback for the Browns shouldn’t make or break them.
Case Keenum has beaten the Broncos this year and can beat Detroit if Baker can’t go.
Nick Chubb is back from COVID protocol, as is Demetric Felton.
The return of a dominant rushing attack will be crucial to supplement what’s been a subpar aerial attack.
The Lions did rush for 229 yards last Sunday, the most Pittsburgh had allowed all season.
If the Browns can bottle up D’Andre Swift, a one-dimensional Lions team isn’t good enough to beat them.
My Prediction: Browns 17, Lions 9