When we all looked at the schedule when it came out last spring we all saw Cleveland and immediately marked a “W” in the column.
Things have changed since then. Cleveland is a bit better than many of us thought they would be even a month ago. But in my opinion … and the staffers who have been recorded below … the Green Bay Packers are better and should leave Lambeau Field with a 4-2 record.
Kevin Gibson: Whither the Green Bay Packers passing game? With Randall Cobb out, James Jones balky at best, and Jarrett Boykin likely to make his first NFL start against Cleveland’s tough defense, Sunday could very well be a nail-biter. The question is, how will Mike McCarthy and his staff find ways to get creative and get the ball into the hands of Jordy Nelson and Jermichael Finley? Will Eddie Lacy get 35 carries? I see this game as a defensive quagmire in the making — I predict multiple sacks on both sides of the ball, several turnovers and a lot of mistakes and penalties. Much like last week, the Packers make a big play or two late and score a win at Lambeau.
Packers 20 Browns 12
David Burdette: Cleveland goes to Green Bay at the best time. With all the injuries the Browns might actually have a chance. Brandon Weeden doesn’t inspire confidence, and other than Josh Gordon and Jordan Cameron, the Browns are lacking. Their offense might be terrible, but the defense is extremely underrated. It may give a depleted Packers offense problems.
On the other side, the Packers need to come out strong. The offense can survive, but it will not be easy. Eddie Lacy needs a big day to help get the W. Defensively they must play for turnovers. Pressure Weeden into mistakes, and the rest of the game will write itself. No way the Browns win AT Lambeau.
Packers 24 Browns 10
Tom Marquardt: The Packers are obviously in a world of hurt right now, but Cleveland has issues of their own. I might have to take the Browns if Hower was at quarterback, but Weeden has shown he just can’t get it done. Lots of Eddie Lacy and J-Mike Finley and a little Jordy thrown in will make for enough offense. The defense will play well enough to keep the browns under 20 despite the injuries.
Packers 27 Browns 17
Davey Miller: The Packers have a lot of new faces expected to play, and play they will. The emergence of Eddie Lacy has us all abuzz, as does the play of our defensive front seven. Packers play a home game at the right time.
Packers 31 Browns 17
Darryl Krejci: Using reverse psychology (since I have been so far off on every other prediction), the Packers will win this game. Aaron Rodgers will throw for seventy-five yards, Eddie Lacy will rush for negative-15 yards and the defense will not record a sack or interception.
Every possible thing that can go wrong will go wrong and the winning field goal will come with 1 second left on the clock.
Keep Calm and Carry On will be replaced with … abandon ship!!!!
Packers 6 Browns 3
Tom Mrozla: If this game weren’t at Lambeau Field I would really think twice. Thankfully, the game against the Browns today is at Lambeau where the Packers don’t lose too often. I think the defense will get to Weeden often and disrupt the Browns’ offense and ultimately force some turnovers. Eddie Lacy has a big day on the ground again and makes us forget about the injuries we suffered last week. Get your popcorn ready, rookies shine and the Packers win. Oh, Bears, Lions, and Vikings lose, as well.
Packers 31 Browns 20
Patrick Hughes: There is a lot of discussion in Packers Nation this week about the toll injuries have taken on this year’s Packers squad. But as I said earlier this week from my View from the Couch, I’m not worried. Winning teams and organizations are built not only on star power, but depth. The depth of the Packers roster is sure to be tested against Cleveland. I believe, however, that the young guys and backups will play hard and a couple of them will cause people to take notice.
With the receiving corps missing two of its heavy hitters it will be no surprise that Jordy Nelson and Jermichael Finley are the focus of Cleveland’s game plan. They will look to shut them down. And they might. I have a hunch that Brandon Bostick is going to find himself more than a couple of opportunities to be a difference maker. I also have a good feeling about Jarrett Boykin. Myles White, an undrafted free-agent is a guy Aaron Rodgers has been high on since OTAs, he could also find himself in a position to make a name for himself.
Keep Calm and Carry on!
Packers 28 Browns 14
Eric Balkman: On the surface, it looks like the Packers will have a rough go of it this week. Without Clay Matthews, Randall Cobb, Brad Jones, Nick Perry and possibly Casey Hayward, Mike Neal and James Jones, this is the most beat up Green Bay has been all season. And the fact that they are going to have to try and stop one of the best up-and-coming playmaking combos in Cleveland wide receiver Josh Gordon and tight end Jordan Cameron doesn’t help matters in the least.
But the Packers showed a great deal of resolve last week when their key cogs went down. A.J. Hawk had one of his best games as a Packer. Eddie Lacy DID have his best game as a Packer. And Aaron Rodgers and Jordy Nelson kept the Green Bay passing attack alive, even if it was not dominant. Talent will again win out this week. Green Bay is simply better than Cleveland. I expect Jarrett Boykin to have a big day and Dom Capers to bait Brandon Weeden into at least a couple of interceptions.
Packers 28, Browns 18
Kevin Dickens: Yes the injuries have mounted the Packers. Missing Randall Cobb and James Jones Sunday will hurt, but this team is resilient. Aaron Rodgers will have the offense playing with a chip on its shoulder. Expect Sam Shields to continue his contract-motivated play in slowing down Josh Gordon. The Packers have been winning ugly and by any means necessary. Against Cleveland will be no different.
Packers 31 Browns 17
Bill Walton: The Packers don their throwback uniforms today, but this game might be a throwback in more ways than that. Even though the Browns play pretty good defense, the Packers will need to run the ball successfully to open up the passing game. With so many players on the shelf (or on crutches) this Sunday we’ll see the next-man-up philosophy put to a tough test.
The Packers defense has been a strength so far this season, but will the rookies and backups be able to get things done? Against the Browns offense I think so. Or to put it another way, the Packers defense, even undermanned, is better than the Cleveland offense.
Likewise the Packers offense, even undermanned, is still going to be a challenge for the Browns defense. Wife and proud band mother Deneen sees the Packers winning this one 21-7. Son and trumpet player John thinks there will be plenty of fireworks with the Packers coming out on top 42-27. I think the Packers will throw it back to old school football and take it to the Browns like it’s almost 1965, winning 24-13. Go PACK!
Luke Hanish: Defensive coordinator Ray Horton really needs to be given some credit so far this season. While a mere .500 team, the Cleveland Browns sport a solid defensive unit. Joe Haden is probably the closest thing to a Revis Island so far this season and will surely be covering Jordy Nelson. With Randall Cobb out and James Jones on the fence to play today, opportunity will present itself to recently-promoted Jake Stoneburner and Myles White.
The Browns have been stout against the run so it will be interesting to see just how much the Packers will get out of Eddie Lacy. Brandon Weeden seems to be the Browns’ weakest link in my opinion and will not be able to keep up with the Packers offense. Jermichael Finley with 2 touchdowns and the Packers prevail.
Packers 31 Browns 10
Dan Dahlke: The Packers injuries make this a close matchup. I think we’ll see a more conservative Green Bay offense than we’re accustomed to. They’ll slow the game down and try to rely on Lacy and the running game and a short passing attack. This game may not be pretty, but the Packers just need to survive with a win, considering all the injuries. Hopefully, the Packers can force a few turnovers as well, and make it an easy game for the offense to manage.
Packers 23 Browns 17
Ray Rivard: Well, I’m taking the high road today in predicting. I think the Packers come out slowly, but explode in the second quarter once Rodgers and the offense have a chance to adjust. I have a gut feeling that this game is going to be much like the Washington Redskins game. The Packers will find it tough sledding for the first couple of series and then Eddie Lacy finds some holes, Aaron Rodgers finds Jarrett Boykin and we will probably even be blessed with a Jermichael Finley sighting.
I won’t be surprised if the defense finds a way to score in this one. A pick-six would be nice. And don’t count out special teams. Maybe Micah Hyde breaks one on a punt return today.
In the end, the Packers win this one going away.
Packers 38 Browns 17