With Jedrick Wills questionable, is playing him worth the risk?

·2 min read

The Cleveland Browns are 0 – 1 facing off with the 1 – 0 Houston Texans. Offseason expectations quickly fade in the NFL with “easy” wins no longer being such during the first quarter of the season.

Saying as much, the Browns loss to the Kansas City Chiefs was more impressive than the Texans win against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Opponents often change the trajectory of single games but, over the long haul of the season, help properly place teams in the NFL pecking order.

The Browns are talented enough to keep up with anyone in the AFC while the Texans are a mix-up of useful veterans but lack enough high-end talent to be a real threat in the AFC.

That doesn’t mean that today’s game is a gimme for Cleveland despite being huge favorites in their home opener. Instead, the Browns must play a solid game and minimize mistakes in order to even both teams’ records.

As discussed, Jedrick Wills questionable status along with Chris Hubbard being out creates the matchup that could decide the game. If Wills is unable to go, Alex Van Pelt noted that James Hudson III was being prepared for the role but we’ve heard that Blake Hance could actually start.

While Cleveland can ill afford to go 0 – 2, risking Wills’ health for the rest of the season could be even more catastrophic. With Khalil Mack coming into town in Week 3 and Danielle Hunter and Joey Bosa following him, the Browns will need Wills as close to full health as possible.

While the Texans have veteran Whitney Mercilus to cause havoc against the Browns offense, he falls short of the three edge rushers coming in over the next few weeks.

If Wills really is questionable to play, the safe and best play would be to hold him out in Week 2 and hope to have him ready for the next few weeks. Will Cleveland risk it to avoid going 0 – 2 or continue to have the long season in mind?

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