Gridiron Gab Week Three Preview: Cleveland at Baltimore

Thursday starts off with an AFC North battle, as the 0-3 Browns travel to Baltimore to take on the 2-1 Ravens.

It hasn’t been much of a battle between the two as of late, as the Ravens have won eight straight over Cleveland, and the Browns are the conference’s only winless team heading into this matchup.

Cleveland got off to a slow start Sunday vs Buffalo at home, falling behind 14-0 before they seemed to wake up. They knocked C.J. Spiller out, and made it a game, but couldn’t stop Ryan Fitzpatrick and eventually lost 24-14.

The Browns last started 0-4 in 2009.

“I look and we’ve got 13 games left,” Browns coach Pat Shurmur said. “It’s about winning your division, so you can get into the playoffs. Nobody in our division has won all their games. We’ve got a division opponent on the road with a great opportunity to get the ship righted on Thursday night.”

The Browns come in short-handed, as receiver Mohamed Massaquoi is out for the game, making it more important that WR Greg Little stops posing and catches the ball.

Cleveland also needs a big day from rookie RB Trent Richardson, who last week was held under 30 yards by a front line of Buffalo that did a good job never letting him get going.

The Browns have scored just 57 points in their first three games, tied for the league’s fifth-worst total. The Ravens D did allow 30 last week vs the Pats, but can’t be expected to have that happen again with a rookie QB in Brandon Weeden who again threw two picks vs the Bills.

With no Joe Haden, look for a big game from Ravens leading WR Torry Smith, who played last week despite losing his little brother earlier in the day to a motorcycle accident.

Ray Rice is coming off his first 100-yard rushing game of the season and could be in for another Thursday. Rice ran for a combined 291 in last year’s two-game sweep of the Browns.

There’s just too much going against the Browns in this one, and the Ravens will come out swinging against their rivals for an easy win.

Baltimore 30 Cleveland 14

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