The Cleveland Browns have just two more chances to avoid making NFL history as they search for their first win of the season at Chicago on Sunday. The Browns are already the first team in league history to start consecutive seasons at 0-14 and will need to win on Sunday or notch an unlikely upset next week at Pittsburgh to avoid becoming just the second team in the NFL (Detroit, 2008) to go 0-16.
Cleveland enters the contest ranked last in the league in scoring, averaging just 14.8 points behind wildly inconsistent quarterback DeShone Kizer, who has thrown nine touchdown passes and 19 interceptions on the season. The Bears will also start a rookie under center in Mitchell Trubisky, who recorded his first 300-yard passing game last week. Despite the lofty numbers, however, Trubisky threw three interceptions in a game for the first time in his career in a 20-10 loss at Detroit. The Bears enter the contest losers of six of their last seven games.
TV: 1 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Bears -6.5.O/U: 38.
ABOUT THE BROWNS (0-14): Cleveland’s only win in 2016 was a Week 15, Christmas Eve victory against San Diego. “I don’t want to dive into that because that was a year ago,” Browns coach Hue Jackson said. “The guys that are playing now are a younger team.” Wide receiver Josh Gordon has been relatively quiet since his return to the league three weeks ago, hauling in just 12 of his 28 targets for 201 yards and one touchdown.
ABOUT THE BEARS (4-10): Chicago finally let Trubisky turn it loose last week and he completed 31 of 46 throws for 314 yards, but his three picks proved costly. Jordan Howard has had a solid season, ranking fourth in the NFL in rushing with 1,069 yards on 245 attempts and a team-high seven touchdowns. Coach John Fox appears to be on the hot seat, posting a 13-33 record since joining the team in 2015 and rumors are swirling he’ll be relieved at the end of the season.
1. Cleveland RB Isaiah Crowell, who expressed dismay with his lack of use in last week’s game where he gained 72 yards on the ground on just five carries, is listed as probable with a shoulder injury.
2. The Bears have won the last two in the series, but the teams haven’t met since 2013.
3. Chicago ranks 12th in the league in scoring defense, allowing 21 points, and is paced by DE Akiem Hicks with a team-high eight sacks.
PREDICTION: Bears 24, Browns 20