Presented by

Around the AFC North: Myles Garrett, Browns' No. 1 Defense Await Ravens 

092523aroundafcn
Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett (95) pressures Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill, left, during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 24, 2023, in Cleveland.

Cleveland Browns: Myles Garrett and No. 1-Ranked Defense Is Ravens' Next Challenge

The Browns (2-1) have the NFL's No. 1-ranked defense following Sunday's 27-3 pummeling of the Titans.

It was the second time in three games that the Browns allowed just three points, and they held Derrick Henry to 20 yards on 11 carries and Ryan Tannehill to just 104 passing yards while sacking him five times.

Peter King of NBC Sports named Browns defensive end Myles Garrett as his Defensive Player of the Week after Garrett had 3.5 sacks and eight pressures against the Titans. According to NextGenStats, Garrett had an average get-off time of 0.62 seconds on six pressures in the first half. Get-off time is the time post-snap it takes for the defender to get past the line of scrimmage. A get off time of 0.75 seconds is considered elite, but Garrett was simply too fast off the ball Sunday to contain.

On one play, Garrett forced the Titans into a delay-of-game penalty by switching sides on the line of scrimmage, which compelled the Titans to move two tight ends to the opposite side trying to block him.

According to Pro Football Focus, Garrett was Week 3's highest-graded and most dominant defensive player. 

The Ravens (2-1) visit the Browns in Week 4, and keeping Garrett from having another huge day will be a top priority for Baltimore. In Week 3, Garrett became the Browns' all-time sack leader with 79, and their defense is yielding just 163.7 yards per game.

Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow Reportedly Will Play MNF Barring a Setback Prior to Kickoff

Joe Burrow aggravated his calf injury during a Week 2 loss against the Ravens, but the Bengals' quarterback is reportedly trending toward playing on Monday Night Football, according to Dianna Russini of The Athletic and Kelsey Conway of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

Whether Burrow or backup quarterback Jake Browning gets the nod, the winless Bengals need a victory against the Rams (1-1). Cincinnati overcame an 0-2 start last season to win the AFC North and reach the conference championship game, but 0-3 is a path that every team wants to avoid.

Since the Super Bowl era began in 1966, only six teams have made the playoffs after starting 0-3, and none of them won the Super Bowl. 

If Burrow doesn't start or leaves early, Browning will be in a tough spot. Undrafted out of Washington in 2019, Browning has never started in five seasons and spent his first three seasons on the Vikings practice squad before joining Cincinnati last year. After watching Browning take most of the reps at practice during the week, Head Coach Zac Taylor said he believes Browning can deliver if necessary.

"Part of the reason Jake is here is his confidence. Just the way he operates and the confidence he has," Taylor said. "And that's really shown this week because he's had more opportunity this week than he has in the past year. Plenty of opportunity in training camp. I like what I've seen from Jake in the way that he's operated."

Pittsburgh Steelers: Team Plane Makes Emergency Landing in Kansas City

The Steelers (2-1) got their offense in gear during Sunday night's 23-18 victory over the Raiders, but the return flight from Las Vegas ran into issues. The team's charter plane made an emergency landing in Kansas City and the Steelers were not scheduled to land back in Pittsburgh until Monday afternoon. Multiple Pittsburgh media outlets reported that oil pressure failure in one of the engines caused the need for the plane to land, but no injuries were reported.

Winning on Sunday made travel issues easier for the Steelers to take. Their offense had been struggling, producing just one offensive touchdown in each of the first two games. Steelers fans at one point chanted "Fire Canada" during Pittsburgh's Week 2 game victory over the Browns, when the defense scored two of the Steelers' three touchdowns.

There was a report that the Steelers have moved embattled Offensive Coordinator Matt Canada into a more prominent role working with quarterback Kenny Pickett during the week.

Pickett had his best game of the season against the Raiders, completing 16 of 28 passes for 235 yards and two touchdowns, while the Steelers produced a season-high 333 yards of total offense and 17 first downs.

"I think we're on track to getting (the offensive mojo) back," Pickett said. "There's never a perfect game. There are things we wished we had back, and that's always going to be the case, but I think we're definitely heading towards that stuff we need to have back."

The Steelers visit the Texans (1-2) in Week 4.

Related Content

Advertising