Following a two-game road trip, the Atlanta Falcons return to Mercedes-Benz Stadium as they will play host to the Cleveland Browns in Week 4. Both teams are coming off Week 3 wins. The Falcons (1-2) defeated the Seattle Seahawks (27-23) while the Browns (2-1) took down the divisional rival Pittsburgh Steelers (29-17). So far, both offenses are surpassing expectations after scoring at least 25 points in every game.
As expected, Cleveland Browns run game has been elite: 190.7 rushing yards per game (first) and five yards per carry (sixth). Running back Nick Chubb leads the NFL with 341 rushing yards, and the offensive line has played well. Quarterback Jacoby Brissett’s play is elevating the offense to greater heights. He averaged a 104.3 passer rating over the last two games. Plus, wideout Amari Cooper has back-to-back games with over 100 receiving yards. The Browns’ offense looks remarkably better compared to last season, which is surprising with Brissett at the helm.
Many anticipated the defense to carry the load, but that has not been the case. The unit has been up and down, especially in the secondary. Cleveland’s defense was decent versus the New York Jets before allowing a 17-point explosion in the fourth quarter. Against the Steelers, it got off to a rough start, surrendering 14 points in the first half. The Browns yielded only three points in the second half. Cleveland needs consistency from its defense, especially from cornerback Denzel Ward and defensive end Myles Garrett, who was injured in a car accident this week.
Atlanta Falcons’offense is on track for a big season with the run game rolling. Last year, the Falcons had one of the NFL’s worst rushing attacks. Through three games, the Falcons are averaging 156.7 rushing yards (fifth) and 4.9 yards per carry (seventh). Running back Cordarrelle Patterson comes off a monster 141-yard performance and the offensive line made a statement.
When the run game is working, coach Arthur Smith deploys lethal play-action passes. This is setting up quarterback Marcus Mariota, who had a 99.8 passer rating in Week 3, for success. And rookie wide receiver Drake London is producing, making him the favorite (+450) to win Offensive Rookie of the Year. Tight end Kyle Pitts finally got in on the action last week, recording 87 receiving yards on five receptions (17.4 yards per catch).
On defense, the Falcons’ pass rush is better. Defensive tackle Grady Jarrett has been fantastic, even against consistent double-teams.
GRADY JARRETT WITH THE THIRD DOWN SACK pic.twitter.com/wSfoWoXBcc
— Carlton (@CrispyCarlton) September 25, 2022
Following an All-Pro 2021 season, cornerback A.J. Terrell has struggled a bit. Atlanta has plenty of work to do on defense, but the unit is improving.
Browns vs Falcons Game Injuries
Browns vs Falcons Head-to-Head
Cleveland has won four of the last five games against Atlanta. The last matchup was in 2018 when the Browns coasted to a 28-16 win.
Browns vs Falcons Game Information
- Date: Sunday, Oct. 2nd.
- Time: 1 p.m. ET
- Location: Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, GA
- How to watch Browns vs Falcons? ESPN
Browns vs Falcons Live Stream: NFL Game Pass
Browns vs Falcons Betting Lines
Browns vs Falcons Prediction
While the Browns rank seventh in rushing yards allowed per game (83.7), they have faced weak offensive lines. Atlanta’s O-line comes off its best showing of the season. This is easily the best-run game Cleveland has seen. Plus, the Browns are dealing with injuries to Garrett and a linebacker. Before his season-ending injury, Anthony Walker was Cleveland’s best cover linebacker. Also, the Browns’ safeties have been shaky. Pitts is poised for a big performance, which adds to the Falcons’ play-action game. Atlanta will cover as a home dog.
“The odds and predictions in the article are based on the time of writing and publication. They may differ as to when the actual event takes place.”