The Cleveland Browns head to San Francisco to take on the 49ers on Monday Night Football. This will be another tough test for the Browns. San Francisco is still undefeated and has some momentum coming into this matchup. Cleveland will need to excel in a few areas in order to crack the .500 mark for the first time since 2014.
Pressure Jimmy G
Jimmy Garoppolo has not been terrible this season. Up to this point in San Francisco he has been inconsistent in regards to his play on the field. Garoppolo has only been sacked twice so far this season and has thrown five touchdowns compared to four interceptions. Pressure Garoppolo and he should struggle to find a rhythm and complete passes on a regular basis.
Attempt to take away George Kittle
George Kittle is easily San Francisco’s best pass catcher. Kittle is Garoppolo’s go-to target in the passing game. The Browns defense must do their best to attempt to take away Kittle. If they succeed Garoppolo will have to go to find another person to throw to. The extra time it takes to scan the defense and find someone else should allow the Browns pass rush to get home and at least hit Garoppolo.
Contain the running game
We all know what the Kyle Shanahan offense is. A zone blocking scheme that will allow pretty much any running back to shine. Right now that running back is Matt Breida. It will be important to not over pursue on outside running plays. These plays frequently cut back inside and can lead to big gains, much like Nick Chubb’s 88-yard touchdown against Baltimore last week. That play was taken straight out of Kyle Shanahan’s playbook. The fact that Cleveland ran that exact play may help the Browns in preparing to face San Francisco. It is also worth mentioning that Browns defensive coordinator Steve Wilks faced Shanahan twice last season while he was the coach of the Arizona Cardinals. This may help just a bit in the containing the running game department.
Continue offensive game plan from last week
The Browns played up to expectations last week. Quick passes and a productive running game. Gone are the long developing pass plays that required the offensive line to block for more than 2.5 seconds. Baker Mayfield got the ball out quickly and the Ravens defense was on their heels all game long. Building off of the game plan from last week will certainly help the Browns this week and as the season continues.