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Free Pick: Arizona (5-0) at Cleveland (3-2) 10/17/21
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Free Pick: Arizona (5-0) at Cleveland (3-2) 10/17/21

This is a game featuring back-to-back Heisman Trophy winning Oklahoma quarterbacks. It’s almost a must-win game for the Browns as they would fall to 3-3 with a loss in this one. Is this going to be the end of the Arizona winning streak? A lot is going to depend on how many injured players the Browns get back for this one as they got beat up last Sunday in the game against the Chargers. Let’s see the matchups.

QUARTERBACKS: I didn’t research this, but I’m willing to place a small wager that there has never been 2 Heisman Trophy winners from the same school, going head-to-head against each other in an NFL game. But that’s what we have in this one. The Browns are led by Baker Mayfield ,who has completed 97 passes out of 145 attempts for 1240 yards and 4 touchdowns. The Cardinals will trot out Kyler Murray who is 124 out of 165 attempts for 1512 yards and 10 touchdowns. They both have been influential in the resurgence of their teams and Murray has been playing a little better. Advantage: Arizona

RUNNING BACKS: The two leading rushers for Arizona are James Conner and Chase Edmunds who have 112 carries for 471 yards and 5 touchdowns. Cleveland has a great one-two punch, in Nick Chubb (90 carries for 523 yards and 4 touchdowns) and Kareem Hunt (55 for 295 and 5 touchdowns). However, both are banged up and neither practiced on Wednesday. Advantage: Cleveland

RECEIVERS: The Cardinals have one of the best in DeAndre Hopkins who has 23 catches for 312 yards and 4 TD’s. Edmunds is a threat out if the backfield as he also has 23 catches. The other threat is Christian Kirk who has chipped in another 21 grabs. Leading receiver, Jarvis Landry, is still out for Cleveland and they are searching for someone to step up. Odell Beckham has been back for three games and he has only 9 catches. He and Mayfield have got to start clicking. Advantage: Arizona

DEFENSE: Both teams have similar defensive statistics. The Browns were playing great defense until injuries hit them last week and several players were knocked out of the game, including star pass-rusher Myles Garrett. It remains to be seen how many are going to be able to play. The Cardinals are led by Budda Baker and Jordan Hicks who have combined for 72 tackles. Advantage: Arizona

This should be another great game on Sunday. It is very hard to make a prediction with all the injuries to several key Browns’ players. If they get the majority of them back, they have a great chance to defeat the Cardinals. If not, it looks like a win for Arizona and they remain undefeated. Vegas is expecting the injured players to play because Cleveland is a 3-point favorite.


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