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Burning Questions

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Burning Questions for the Browns as they head into Week 7 matchup vs. the Colts

The Browns will travel to Lucas Oil Stadium to face an AFC opponent on Sunday


On Friday, HC Kevin Stefanski announced that QB Deshaun Watson will be reevaluated in 48 hours after going through a full workload in Friday's practice. Watson was officially listed as questionable, and QB P.J. Walker will be the backup. A decision on which quarterback will start Sunday will come then.

The Browns will face off against the Colts, who are 3-3 this season, at Lucas Oil Stadium. Here are three burning questions heading into Sunday's game.

Will the offense have one clean game?

The Browns offense has struggled throughout the season to not turn the ball over. In every game this season, they have had at least one turnover, which have led to points for the opposing team in four of their five games.

In Week 2, the Browns fumbled three times and lost all three. Out of the three, when Watson was sacked with 6:58 left in the fourth quarter and lost the ball, it resulted in a touchdown by LB TJ Watt to put the Steelers up 26-22.

In Week 3, the Titan's only points of the game came after WR Elijah Moore lost the ball after being tackled by CB Sean Murphy-Bunting. The Titans recovered, and the offense kicked a field goal to tie the game in the second quarter at 3-3.

In Week 4, The Browns had a total of three interceptions, but two led to touchdowns. The first came in the first quarter when CB Brandon Stephens picked off QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson, and the Ravens scored a touchdown on their next drive. It was crucial because the Ravens offense struggled in their first two drives, having to punt.

Then, in Week 6, Walker threw two interceptions, one in the first quarter and one in the fourth. The fourth-quarter interception almost sealed the game for the 49ers. Walker threw a pick to CB Deommodore Lenoir, putting the 49ers offense at the 8-yard line. The 49ers offense scored a touchdown on their first play.

Turnovers are going to happen, but the Browns have to minimize them going into Week 7 against a Colts team who goes after the ball.

"The crowd is going to be into it," Watson said. "The defense creates turnovers. The defense is very, they feed off the energy of that stadium. So, they are led by that linebacker group and up front. And I know they're young in the secondary, but those guys are going to come and be ready for the challenge. So, we got to make sure we're ready."

Check out photos of the team working to prepare for the Indianapolis Colts

Will the running keep trending upward?

Last week, the Browns utilized their running game with 34 attempts against the 49ers, which was the most the Browns have run the ball since Week 2.

The coaching staff relied more on the run game against the 49ers, as RB Kareem Hunt finished the game with 12 carries and RB Jerome Ford had 17 carries. This is also the first time since Week 2 that the run game was the driving force for the Browns offense.

"We wanted the coaches to stick with the run and play through us," Hunt said. "I believe we are a run-first team no matter what. We need to run the football to open up the pass game. We need teams to fear the run."

The Colts are a team that performs well at stopping big runs by opposing teams. They currently rank 10th in the league for yards per carry, allowing an average of 3.7 yards per carry.

However, the Colts defense has allowed a relatively high number of rushing touchdowns this season, with a total of nine given up through six games. Additionally, they have allowed 43 rushing first downs, which ranks 13th in the league.

Will the defense get another interception?

The Browns defense has been outstanding this season, with the third fewest yards allowed by a team through its five games since 1971. They are giving up only 200.4 yards per game, which is the lowest in the league, and have held their opponents to a league-low 23.1 percent success rate on third-down conversions.

While they have been great, the one category that they are at the bottom is interceptions. The Browns only have two picks on the season – one from S Grant Delpit and the other from CB MJ Emerson.

The Browns are set to play against the Colts, who will have to rely on their backup veteran QB Gardner Minshew, after it was announced that rookie QB Anthony Richardson would undergo season-ending surgery.

Minshew is coming off his worst game to date in Week 6. Heading into their matchup against the Jaguars, Minshew had never thrown multiple interceptions in a single NFL game. He threw three against the Jaguars.

"Before going in the last week, he hadn't (thrown) a pick," Delpit said. "The Jags got on him a little bit. It was a tough game for them. So, I'm sure that he's going to have that bounce back mentality and mentality to take care of the ball. So, we (are) reversing it. We got to go get it just like the Jags did last week and carry that momentum that we had from last week."

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