Cleveland Browns vs. Miami Dolphins Free Pick - 9/8/13
Miami Dolphins (0-0) at Cleveland Browns (0-0)
NFL Football: Sunday, September 8, 2013 at 1:00 pm (FirstEnergy Stadium)
The Line: Cleveland Browns 1 -- Over/Under: 41 See the Latest Odds
The Miami Dolphins and Cleveland Browns square off at FirstEnergy Stadium to kick off the new year.
The expectations are high for Miami heading heading in to the new season but there has been a question surrounding the quarterback for this team for quite some time. I mean for years as the Fish never seem to have explosiveness in the passing game and one naturally has to ask if Ryan Tannehill is that guy. He gets a pass for last year but he won't this time unless he can get the ball down field and find the end zone more often. Mike Wallace, Brandon Gibson and Brian Hartline are not the most explosive receiving corps in the league but if they get the ball in a catchable spot they should be solid. Lamar Miller takes over in the back field and is supposed to produce as well as Reggie Bush but seeing is believing especially with an offensive line with a few questions. The Fins can be a disruptive defensive unit but that depends on whether Phillip Wheeler and Dannell Ellerbe can duplicate the efforts of Kevin Bunett and Karlos Dansby in the linebacking unit which looks like a tall order.
Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
There was a time that Cleveland was as feared as any team in the game but that seems like ages ago when the Browns couldn't get past John Elway and always found a way to lose in the postseason. Fast forward to the present and reaching the playoffs has been an impossible task and the Browns fans might have to wait even longer. Brandon Weeden has emerged as the front runner in the quarterback battle, perhaps by default with few options at the position. Devone Bess and Greg Little bring 114 receptions and around 1,500 yard to the receiving corps but those numbers have to go up and finding a third and fourth option is a necessity. Trent Richardson is adequate in the back field but needs to break the 1,000 yard plateau and stay healthy at the same time. The defensive side of the football is the obvious strength of this team with quality players sprinkled throughout but as I said before, you still need to score in this game.
Both teams need to find a way to score points and will likely be relying on their defenses more than most teams because they won't win shootouts. I'm inclined to take the point with the home team in an ugly affair...