Experts say Browns should come out a winner

As Week 1 is on our heels, the majority of national analysts believe the Cleveland Browns should be victorious this Sunday as they host the New Orleans Saints. Out of 8 expert panelists on ESPN.com, 5 pick the Browns. Six experts on CBS Sportsline make their picks and five go with Cleveland. Yahoo’s four analysts, however, were split in their opinions. Here’s a look at a few other national views on the game.

Vinnie Iyer, SportingNews

New Orleans at Cleveland. In the most anticipated Lake Erie debut since LeBron James, Bush will have his moments, but not too many against Romeo Crennel’s well-coached and significantly upgraded 3-4. The Browns, however, don’t need to face that same problem in the Saints’ woeful linebacker corps, and they should take the game out of Charlie Frye’s hands with a successful dose of Reuben Droughns. Browns 20, Saints 10.

Peter King, Sports Illustrated

It’s not an ideal debut for Reggie Bush, losing his opener and getting pelted with milkbones at the same time, but I have a feeling he’d better get used to it — at least the losing part.
Cleveland 20, New Orleans 17

All 32 teams at this point are entering the 2006 season with high hopes and believe they can go into Week 1 with a real, legitimate shot at winning that first game. We as Browns fans are no different. Roughly 88% of the voters on the team’s web site pick the Browns to beat the Saints. Optimism is reigning supreme around Brownstown as we enter the season. In all seriousness though, this game is one that the Browns can and should win. Like they have for each of the past seven seasons since they returned to the NFL, the Browns will open up a season at home. As inconsistent as the Browns’ offense has looked thusfar in the preseason, they should be able to exploit a weak Saints defense, especially on the ground. In front of the soldout home crowd, the Brownies pull out a win. Browns 17, Saints 13.

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