Oakland Raiders: Keys To Victory Over Cleveland Browns

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September 20, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders wide receiver Michael Crabtree (15) scores a touchdown against Baltimore Ravens defensive back Kyle Arrington (24, right) during the third quarter at O.co Coliseum. The Raiders defeated the Ravens 37-33. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland Raiders notched an important win at home over the Baltimore Ravens last Sunday. Important in that it allowed them to stay out of an 0-2 hole, and important in that the manner in which they won the game showed that this team has the ability to far better than anybody expects of them this season. Now, the Raiders travel to Ohio to take on that Factory of Sadness, the Cleveland Browns.

After Johnny Manziel led Cleveland to a win over Marcus Mariota and the Titans last week, it appears that the second year signal caller will be taking a seat on the bench again now that Josh McCown has been cleared to play following a concussion in week one. On the surface, that’s a piece of good news for the Raiders, but one they shouldn’t get too comfortable with – more on that later.

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The Raiders put up a very impressive offensive showing against the Ravens, scoring on seven of ten possessions and hanging 37 points on a stout Baltimore defense – a Baltimore defense that made the high octane Broncos offense and Peyton Manning look positively pedestrian in week one.

The problem for the Raiders is that their defense surrendered 33 points to a Ravens offense that was held without a touchdown in week one, and a Ravens offense that is bereft of explosive playmaking talent. It actually marked the second straight week the Raiders gave up 33 points in a game, as the Cincinnati Bengals put up the same point total on Oakland in week one.

Surrendering 66 points in two weeks points to a very big problem with Ken Norton‘s defense and is something that is going to need to be worked out sooner rather than later. If Oakland’s troubles on defense can’t be fixed, it could be a very long season for the Raiders, even if their offense is humming along as well as it did against Baltimore. Eventually, they are going to have to make some stops.

The Browns are a team that has plenty of issues of their own. The Raiders will need to seize the opportunity and take advantage of Cleveland’s troubles to come out of this game on top.

Most people seem to be picking Cleveland to come out ahead in the battle of the 1-1 teams, but there is a path to victory for Oakland. Here are some of the keys to a Raiders win.

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