Browns vs Bengals Game Preview: Sunday 1 PM 1/7/24

January 7, 2024

Andy Billman Tony Camino

Week 18 Game Breakdown

1 – Extra Bye Week

This game today for the Browns is a true exhibition, as the Browns are resting several players who have nagging injuries:

Amari Cooper

Joe Flacco

Mike Ford

Myles Garrett

Dustin Hopkins

Greg Newsome

Juan Thornhill

2 – Jeff Driskel

Making the start today in replacement of Flacco will be Jeff Driskel.  This is the perfect opportunity for Driskel to see if he is worthy of backing up Flacco in the playoffs or if it will be PJ Walker.  Driskel will be the first-ever quarterback to start for both the Bengals and the Browns in a game. 

3 – AFC South

The Browns will play either in Houston against the Texans if the Jaguars lose today against the Titans, or they will play in Jacksonville if the Jaguars win.


It is a perfect day to enjoy Sunday football. Hopefully, the Browns will come out of this game with minimal injuries.

Take the kitty cats and give seven – Cincy wins 24-7

Cleveland Browns Notes

The team taking the field for the playoffs against the Bengals this week may not resemble the Cleveland Browns from one week ago. Having secured a wildcard spot and firmly established in their playoff position, the Browns attained their 11th win of the season with a 37-20 triumph over the Jets at home last week. Quarterback Joe Flacco, who joined the roster just six weeks ago after being called off the streets, continued his remarkable stint as the team’s starter. Despite losing key players like top quarterback Deshaun Watson and top running back Nick Chubb to season-ending injuries, the Browns, with Flacco at the helm, boast a 4-1 record. Flacco’s impressive performance last Thursday night against the Jets, where he threw for 309 yards and three scores, earned him chants of ‘Flacco! Flacco!’ from the fans as he exited the field in yet another victory. However, Jeff Driskel will start in place of Flacco and other key players in the upcoming game, as the Browns are locked into their current playoff position.

Reflecting on his unexpected role, Flacco remarked, “You don’t know how many of these moments you’re going to get. I’m going to remember this for the rest of my life.”

With their playoff berth secured, the Browns are unlikely to deploy many key starters on Sunday. In terms of season statistics, the Browns have risen to 9th overall in points per game, standing at 25th in rushing but climbing to 19th in passing primarily due to Flacco’s resurgence. Defensively, they rank 11th in points allowed per game, 14th against the run, and possess the NFL’s top-ranked pass defense. Despite being third in takeaways, the Browns find themselves at the bottom of the league in giveaways this season.

Cincinnati Bengals Notes

The Cincinnati Bengals’ postseason aspirations came to an end once again on the same turf where they concluded the previous season, suffering a 25-17 defeat to the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium. Despite holding a 17-13 lead at halftime, the Bengals’ offense faltered in the second half, and a late drive was thwarted, concluding a challenging season for a team that began the year as a Super Bowl favorite. Quarterback Jake Browning, in his sixth consecutive start since starting quarterback Joe Burrow’s season-ending injury against the Ravens, completed the game with 197 passing yards and a touchdown. Running back Joe Mixon contributed 65 rushing yards and a touchdown reception in the hard-fought loss.

Cincinnati coach Zac Taylor remarked, “Every player gave their all on the field. It was an emotional and physical game, with everything we anticipated coming to pass. Credit to Kansas City; they closed it out down the stretch.”

The Bengals will conclude their disappointing season against the Browns on Sunday. Similar to the Browns, they may be without key players as the coaching staff evaluates the significance of fielding players nursing injuries in a game with no playoff implications. Throughout the season, the Bengals rank 20th in points per game, 27th in rushing, and 11th in passing. Defensively, they have struggled, standing 21st in points allowed per game, 31st against the run, and 29th against the pass. Despite these challenges, the Bengals have excelled in protecting the football, ranking third in the NFL in giveaways, and are also 12th in takeaways this season.

Tony Camino’s Best Bets for Browns vs. Bengals – Week 18

No recommended bets for this weeks game

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