Browns to be featured in four prime-time games


The NFL is on board with the Cleveland Browns. The league granted the Browns four prime-time games in 2019, including three in the first five weeks of the season, perhaps the most notable takeaway from Wednesday night’s schedule release.

No team has appeared in fewer prime-time games during the past 10 seasons than the Browns (11). Over that span, the franchise accumulated an NFL-worst 41-118-1 record. But they won five of their final seven games in 2018 after inserting quarterback Baker Mayfield into the starting lineup, and their offseason trade for receiver Odell Beckham and pass rusher Olivier Vernon has further elevated excitement around the team.

The Browns will open their prime-time schedule in Week 2 at the New York Jets on ESPN’s Monday Night Football. In Week 3, they will host the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday Night Football (NBC).

In Week 5, they’ll play on Monday night at the San Francisco 49ers. Finally, they’ll host the Pittsburgh Steelers on Thursday night in Week 11.

The league will continue its flexible schedule program. Beginning in Week 11, the league will have the option to move Sunday afternoon games to Sunday night to ensure quality matchups.

The NFL will open the regular season, the 100th in its history, Sept. 5 in a historic game between the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. The Super Bowl LIII champion New England Patriots will open at home on Sept. 8 against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday Night Football.

The Patriots’ schedule also features a rematch of last season’s AFC Championship Game, as New England will host Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 14. Some other highlights on New England’s schedule include a Week 8 home game against the Cleveland Browns, a Week 9 game on Sunday night in Baltimore against the Ravens, a Week 11 game in Philadelphia against the Eagles and a Week 12 game at home against the Dallas Cowboys.

All 32 teams will appear in at least one game on Thursday, Sunday or Monday night.

Meanwhile, history buffs will be counting down the weeks as two quarterbacks approach Peyton Manning’s record for career touchdown passes (539). New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees needs 20 touchdown throws to break the record; if he follows his career pace of about 1.9 touchdown throws per game, he’ll eclipse Manning in Week 12 at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. (The Saints play at home against the Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers on either side of that game).

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady needs 23 touchdown passes to get past Manning. At his career pace, he would project to do it in Week 13 at the Houston Texans. (The Patriots play at home against the Dallas Cowboys and Kansas City Chiefs on either side of that game).

Source : ESPN