The Seattle Seahawks will face a Cleveland Browns offense in Week 8 that is incredibly weakened by the absences of starting quarterback Deshaun Watson and leading rusher Jerome Ford. Cleveland will start P.J. Walker at quarterback and Walker hasn't been good in his four-year career when tasked with QB1 duties. The Browns still have talent at running back, but they lost Nick Chubb earlier this year and without Ford Seattle will see a lot of Kareem Hunt and Pierre Strong.
Of course, all that just means that somehow Cleveland will explode for 500 total yards and 35 points, right? Well, maybe we should start having more trust in the Seahawks defense because they have shown to be much better in the last few weeks, especially against backup quarterbacks. Seattle will be facing another backup in Walker this week.
The game might simply come down to which defense is better. Cleveland is fantastic and well-rounded defensively. Seattle has the better quarterback in Geno Smith, but Cleveland could score just enough to win. Here is some news for Friday.
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith praises Myles Garrett and others
In some questions and answers with reporters on Thursday, Geno Smith was asked about how the team was preparing for Myles Garrett. Garrett is a freakish beast, of course, and possibly the best defensive end in the NFL. He has 82 sacks since he came into the league in 2017 and has 16 each in both of the last two years. He already has 7.5 sacks in six games in 2023.
Oh, and he also has 3 forced fumbles, 16 quarterback hits, and 6 tackles for loss this year. The QB hits number is twice what the Seahawks current leader has. Jarran Reed has 8. Seattle does have a player that matches the TFL number, though; Jordyn Brooks also has 6. The problem for Seattle's offense is that Garrett isn't the only very good player for the Browns and Geno Smith wanted to make a point of saying that.
Smith said he was "super aware" that Garrett was having a "tremendous year" but also said "all (Cleveland's) guys do a great job." While Smith was partly being diplomatic not to give bulletin board material to any Browns, he's also correct. Two other Browns - Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah and Ogbonnia Okoronkwo - have more tackles for loss than Garrett. The point is Cleveland has a really good defense and Geno Smith knows it and he knows he needs to not take chances with turning the ball over in Week 8.