Browns vs. Eagles Pre-Season Game Preview | Thursday 7:30 PM 8/17/23

August 17, 2023

Andy Billman Tony Camino

Preseason Game 3 Breakdown and Betting Prognostications

3 Things Preview Browns vs. Eagles:

1 – DTR

The DTR hype machine is running high right now, and for good reason, as he is playing well in the preseason.  He is playing so well that there’s been talk about replacing Joshua Dobbs as the backup. 

Let’s see if DTR can keep it up, as he will start against the Eagles. 

2 – Back Up Running Back

Does this sound like a familiar theme?  

Demetric Felton and John Kelly have not claimed a reason to push into the number two role with Jerome Ford out with an injury.  It would be great to see one of the two running backs take hold of this opportunity to make the team, as both are on the cut line. 

3 – Defensive Tackle

Dalvin Tomlinson will be a staple at defensive tackle, and Shelby Harris has a spot, but after those two, there’s a huge gap of questions on who is going to be in the rotation at DT.  It is open season, and Thursday’s game is a huge opportunity to lock up spots.

Bonus – Cade York 

The greatest practice kicker in Browns history needs to start making all kicks in the preseason games to get some confidence for himself. If he continues to miss…..I mean, I guess making them in practice will hold for this team. I hope he turns it on for the regular season.  For now, let’s cross our fingers and rub our rabbit’s foot when York trots on the field. 

Browns Notes

The Cleveland Browns are entering their third preseason game, coming off a 21-16 victory against the Jets in the annual Hall of Fame game in Canton. In their most recent matchup, they suffered a 17-15 home loss against the Commanders last Friday. Cleveland had a mixed preseason record of 1-2 last year and faced challenges in the 2022 season, finishing with a 7-10 record.

As the regular season approaches, Cleveland is in the midst of a competition for the backup quarterback positions. Deshaun Watson is expected to start in week one, leaving the battle for the backup role. Leading the pack is Joshua Dobbs, the favored candidate, but Kellen Mond and Dorian Thompson-Robinson will also have opportunities to move up the depth chart. Mond has demonstrated his skills with 171 passing yards in two preseason games.

Dorian Thompson-Robinson, who gained prominence during his impressive years at UCLA, has showcased exceptional performance during preseason play. The rookie quarterback has completed an impressive 80% of his passes, amassing 184 yards. His strong showing might earn him the backup role if Josh Dobbs continues to struggle. Dobbs, who did not play in the initial exhibition game, faced difficulties last week, completing only 8 of 16 passes for 77 yards. Across his NFL regular season career, he has accumulated 456 passing yards with a touchdown-to-interception ratio of 2:3.

Cleveland faces uncertainty in their running back options behind Nick Chubb. Jerome Ford, contending for the backup running back position, is currently sidelined due to a hamstring injury. Demetric Felton Jr. has accumulated 20 rushing yards over two seasons with the Browns, while John Kelly Jr. has recorded just 96 career yards. Kelly has shown some promise in this preseason with 48 rushing yards. David Bell, who caught three passes last week, is expected to have increased playing time. In his rookie season of 2022, he made 24 receptions for 214 yards and contributed 39 receiving yards in the two exhibition games. Elijah Moore, acquired from the Jets, is listed as questionable with a rib injury, and Marquise Goodwin is unavailable due to illness.

During the previous season, the Browns averaged 21.2 points per game, ranking them 18th in the league. Defensively, they conceded an average of 22.4 points per game, placing them 20th in that category.

Eagles Notes

The Philadelphia Eagles are in search of their first preseason victory. Last week, they faced a 5.5-point underdog status and suffered a 20-19 loss on the road against the Ravens. Their recent preseason record shows three losses out of the last four games. Notably, there isn’t an ongoing quarterback competition at their training camp. Jalen Hurts did not participate in the previous game, confirming his position as the clear-cut number 1 QB. It’s likely that he will make an appearance for a few series in the upcoming game.

Among the Eagles’ roster, they possess one of the NFL’s better backup quarterbacks in Marcus Mariota, who held a starting role for several years. In the last game, Mariota completed 7 out of 11 passes for 58 yards. Following him on the depth charts are Ian Book and Tanner McKee. Book, drafted in the fourth round of the 2021 draft, is 25 years old and has managed 135 passing yards in his limited regular-season participation.

Tanner McKee saw significant playtime in the recent Baltimore game, completing 10 out of 20 passes for 148 yards. He was the Eagles’ sixth-round pick in the most recent draft and, at 23 years old, recorded 1348 passing yards with a 13:8 touchdown-to-interception ratio during his time at Stanford last year.

The Eagles possess strong depth in their running back lineup, led by D’Andre Swift, acquired through a trade with the Lions. Although Swift is capable of impressive performances, he has struggled with injuries. The running back depth chart also features established NFL talents such as Rashaad Penny and Boston Scott. Penny managed to accumulate 346 rushing yards in the previous season and has a career total of over 1900 yards. Scott, on the other hand, collected 217 rushing yards last year.

The Eagles’ receiving corps is currently dealing with injuries. Greg Ward, a wide receiver, secured 53 receiving yards in the last game. Quez Watkins, who recorded 354 receiving yards in the past season, missed the preseason opener due to a hamstring injury and his availability remains uncertain. Depth wide receivers Britain Covey and Deon Cain are also nursing injuries, with their status yet to be determined.

Philadelphia boasts a dynamic offense that averaged 28.1 points per game last year, ranking them third in the league. Their defense proved formidable, holding opponents to an average of only 20.2 points, which positioned them in eighth place in the NFL.

Pay The Man His Money Picks

Best Bets for Browns vs Eagles Preseason Week 3

The weather didn’t do us any favors in the Browns’ last two preseason games, and it’s back to the backups for this third matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles. The last time only the backups played, it led to a 3-0 night, including a +750 cashout. However, there’s only one pick for tonight’s game. We’re aiming to save our bankroll for a strong start once the regular season begins.

Pre-Season Picks Record: 3-2

The Pick: Over 37.5 points (-108)

Following joint practices a year ago with the Eagles, the teams managed to put up a total of 41 points despite only playing the backups. In the Browns’ last two years of preseason games, the total has gone over in all but two: the last rainy game versus the Commanders and a 37-point total against the Jaguars. On the Eagles’ side, every game in the last two years of the preseason has also gone over that total.

I like Kevin Stefanski’s ability to find easy yards with anyone in the screen game and quick pass game, and Dorian Thompson-Robinson has shown little issue marching down and scoring points thus far. On the Eagles’ side, we’ll likely see a lot of rookie Tanner McKee, who impressed with 148 yards in his debut. Their depth at running back makes it likely that they’ll be giving the ball to a back with some NFL experience, as Rashaad Penny led the charge a week ago.

This is a typically well-set line by Vegas, with the range of points likely falling somewhere in the 32-42 range. While there are more outcomes to bet the under in this game, I think both teams will muster right around 20 points to cash in on this one.


With another game featuring no starters, it continues to be the DTR show for the Browns. Battles for the last spots in different position groups are on display, such as running back, wide receiver, and defensive tackle. Nothing matters more in this game than the performance of the sole starter, Cade York. He has been reported as perfect in practice, and his ability is clearly there. He needs to start translating that talent to games more consistently before the Browns consider bringing in someone else to replace the former fourth-round pick. Another week of Browns’ practice football to prepare us for real Browns’ football; it’s time to sit back and enjoy the DTR show once again.

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