Browns-Bengals: Breakdown of the NFL's Must-See Game of Week 16

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Browns-Bengals: Breakdown of the NFL's Must-See Game of Week 16

The juggernaut Cleveland Browns (4-10) host the Cinderella darlings of the NFL, the Cincinnati Bengals (2-11-1), in the 71st battle of Ohio this Sunday at Cleveland Browns Stadium. Those who thought that the epic battle that these two teams waged in Week Two when both teams were 0-3 couldn’t be outdone have to be kicking themselves.

 

The series stands tied at 35 wins apiece. Who stands to take the lead in this back and forth series?  Let’s break it down by position.

 

 

QUARTERBACK

 

Carson Palmer has had his ups and downs since his horrific knee injury in the 2005 playoffs but still has to be considered in the upper tier of NFL quarterbacks. Brady Quinn has the college pedigree, hype, and looks to be a superstar in this league.

 

They both...What? They aren’t playing? Neither one? Really? What’s the deal?

 

Is Carson filming those sexually suggestive hot dog adds this weekend? Partying with Matt Leinart, maybe?

 

And where is Quinn? Pimping Myoplex and Subway sandwiches? At a wedding dancing to “YMCA” by the Village People again?

 

Oh, they're both injured, fine. Then who is...

 

Ryan Fitzpatrick and Ken Dorsey?!? Are you f’n kidding me? No, seriously, these guys are STARTING?  Sweet lord.

 

Normally you would take the guy from “Tha U” over the guy from Harvard, but Fitzpatrick is actually athletic where as Dorsey makes Bernie Kosar look like Michael Flatley.

 

Advantage:  BENGALS

 

 

RUNNING BACK

 

Jamal Lewis versus Cedric Benson. The former is nearing 10,000 career rushing yards as he looks old and slow. The later is a former first-round bust that had his first production game in over two years last week.

 

Tough call.

 

Well, Lewis got busted for dealing crack a few years back and had to serve hard time.  Benson likes to get over-served and has a hard time driving afterwards.

 

Advantage:  BROWNS

 

 

RECEIVERS AND TIGHT ENDS

 

Braylon Edwards is sad because nobody likes him because he is from Michigan. Chad Johnson is sad because he would have had to buy 10,000 jerseys if he wanted to change his name to Chad Ocho Cinco.

 

T. J. Houshmandzadeh is banged up and so is Kellen Winslow. But Winslow is a soldier!  But at least Houshmandzadeh is playing.

 

This may come down to Chris Henry versus Donte Stallworth—a dream matchup that no one could ever imagine. Who do you go with here? The guy with the rap sheet longer than most Christmas lists or the guy who thinks his brain is inhabited by a Martian.

 

I got it. Oregon State alum Derek Anderson says go with my fellow alumni Johnson and Houshmandzadeh over Edwards. Why, because Anderson hates Michigan, too? No, because they don’t drop the football when it is thrown to them.

 

Advantage:  BENGALS

 

 

OFFENSIVE LINE

 

The Browns have a guy, Kevin Shaffer, who I call “The Human Parking Cone” (HPC) because putting a parking cone at right tackle would do just as good of a job. Rex Hadnot has a beard. Hank Fraley is fat. Joe Thomas is better that Levi Jones. But Browns NT Shaun Rogers might eat Bengals center Eric Ghiaciuc.

 

Advantage:  BROWNS

 

 

DEFENSIVE LINE

 

Did I mention Sean Rogers might eat Eric Ghiaciuc?  Carson Palmer said that Shaun Smith looks like the hamburglar when he wore the Bengals’ striped uniform, which is awesome! I’m stopping right there. I’ve seen enough.

 

Advantage:  BROWNS

 

 

LINEBACKERS

 

I don’t know who plays LB for Cincinnati, but I do know that other than D’Qwell Jackson no other LBs play for Cleveland.

 

Advantage:  BENGALS

 

 

DEFENSIVE BACKS

 

Michigan alum Leon Hall is playing corner for the Bengals. Browns fans don’t like him… because he plays for the Bengals. Former Brown Chris Crocker returns to Cleveland for the first time since being traded.

 

Brandon McDonald set a team record for most interception yards in a game and the greatest back flip into the end zone when you team is still down by 20 points.  You stay classy, B-Mac!

 

Advantage:  BENGALS

 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

 

Shayne Graham has red hair. Phil Dawson might be the best player on the Browns and he’s the freaking kicker. Plus his wife is hot, can sing the national anthem, and was a cheerleader at the University of Texas.

 

Dave Zastudil is having knee problems and the Browns’ apparently have a “secret punter” on call in case he can not punt. Please God let it be Scott Player and his awesome 50-year-old man porno-mustache!

 

Oh wait, Josh Cribbs, duh.

 

Advantage:  BROWNS

 

 

COACHING

 

Marvin Lewis has floundered at the helm of the Bengals but owner Mike Brown isn’t going to fire him in this economy.  Plus, he is just trying to ruin his father’s name more than the Browns are currently trying to do.

 

Browns fans are just happy that Romeo Crennel remembers to wear pants on the sidelines, let alone make decisions on challenges, field goals, and personnel. Would it surprise you to see Romeo enjoying a nice, cool mojito and about four pizzas on the sidelines on Sunday?

 

It’s as if he is Leslie Nielsen as Lt. Frank Drebin in The Naked Gun...

 

“The attempt on Nordberg's life left me shaken and disturbed, and all the questions kept coming up over and over again, like bubbles in a case of club soda. Who was this character in the hospital? And why was he trying to kill Nordberg? And for whom?

 

"Did Ludwig lie to me? I didn't have any proof, but somehow, I didn't entirely trust him either. Why was the 'I Luv You' not listed in Ludwig's records? And if it was, did he know about it? And if he didn't, who did? And where the hell was I?”

 

But more like...

 

The attempt on Nordberg's life left me shaken and disturbed, and all the questions kept coming up over and over again, like bubbles in a case of club soda. Who was this staph infection in the hospital?

 

And why was he trying to kill Kellen Winslow? And for whom? Did Phil Savage lie to me? I didn't have any proof, but somehow, I didn't entirely trust him either. Why was the 'Brady Quinn' not listed in my roster records? And if he was, did I know about it? And if I didn't, who did? And where the hell was I?

 

Advantage:  PUSH

 

 

Well, shoot I have no clue about this one folks. That is how colossal this matchup of two NFL titans is. It truly is the proverbial irresistible force versus the immovable object.  But something has to got to give in the 71st Battle of Ohio...well unless they tie.

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