The 2021 NFL season is just a few days away.
This week will be all about predictions and prognostications.
The Cleveland Browns will be front and center in these discussions because of their successful 2020 season and the clever scheduling that sends them back to Arrowhead on Sunday for a rematch with the Kansas City Chiefs.
Peter Schrager of NFL Network’s Good Morning Football had an interesting take on the game.
"The Browns are going into Arrowhead. It's almost a playoff game Week 1. We've had a whole summer of hype about the Browns. You cannot get waxed in this game.. and I don't think they will be."
@PSchrags is ready for #CLEvsKC pic.twitter.com/oIHNzDUQMb
— GMFB (@gmfb) September 7, 2021
Schrager’s main point is:
“The Browns are going into Arrowhead. It’s almost a playoff game Week 1. We’ve had a whole summer of hype about the Browns. You cannot get waxed in this game.. and I don’t think they will be.”
Week 1 Matters
There has been so much talk about this game with dissenting opinions.
Some say that the Week 1 game does not make the season so if the Browns lose, it will be okay.
Others say that Week 1 sets the tone and provides confidence and momentum especially if the Browns pull out a win over the defending AFC Champion Chiefs.
Still, others think like Schrager that this could be a playoff preview that we are treated to in Week 1.
My interpretation of Peter Schrager’s comment is that the Browns need to be very competitive.
The hype about the improved defense with critical draft pick and free-agent additions and the second-year continuity with the offensive playbook need to be evident in this game.
One key to victory this week is rookie Greg Newsome. Facing the Chiefs is no easy task for anyone let alone a rookie. If the Browns are to come away with a win in Arrowhead they will need Newsome to step up big on Sunday #Browns pic.twitter.com/uvknIQf0qf
— Jacob Roach (@roachizm13) September 7, 2021
— Around The NFL (@AroundTheNFL) September 7, 2021
If the Browns lose, it has to be a hard fought, well contested game.
Giving up big plays (like the Chadd Henne one in January) or dealing with extremely questionable non-calls from the officials should not be the headlines of this game.
The game headline must be about a much improved Browns team rising to the occasion in the spotlight on Week 1.
The good news is that we do not have to wait much longer to see how the Browns measure up to the moment.
The Week 1 contest kicks off at 4:25 pm EDT on Sunday, September 12.