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Three Reasons Why the Cleveland Browns Could Defeat the Baltimore Ravens in Week 9

Yahoo Contributor Network
COMMENTARY | Three days after Halloween, the Cleveland Browns hope to slay a demon that has haunted them for nearly six years -- the Baltimore Ravens.

The Browns have lost 11 straight games to the Ravens, the most recent of which came in Week 2 at Baltimore, 14-6. Seven weeks have passed since then, and the Browns are definitely a different team than they were in early September, so there is reason to believe that this could finally be the game in which Cleveland knocks off their hated rivals. These are three reasons why the Browns could come out victorious on November 3:

Josh Gordon Will Be On The Field

If you remember, Gordon did not play in Cleveland's first meeting against Baltimore, as he was serving a two-game suspension for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy. Gordon's presence was certainly missed in Week 2, with Cleveland managing just 259 yards of total offense against a Baltimore defense that had been torched by Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos in Week 1.

Now that the trade deadline has passed, Gordon is now secure in the knowledge that he will be in a Browns uniform for the remainder of 2013. Don't be surprised if the second-year wide receiver is the player that lifts the Browns to a victory this weekend.

Baltimore's Ground Game Still Stinks

Baltimore's rushing attack was definitely not the reason why the Ravens defeated the Browns in Week 2. Despite rushing the ball 36 times in that game, Baltimore didn't even break the century mark on the ground, accumulating just 99 yards for a mere 2.8 yards per carry.

Unfortunately for the Ravens, 2.8 yards per carry is a common sight when looking through their statistics. That's what Baltimore as a team is averaging on the year, which makes them dead last in the NFL in that category. And it's what running back Ray Rice is averaging in 2013, as he struggles through what is turning into the worst season of his six-year NFL career.

Suffice it to say that Baltimore is going to have a tough time on the ground against a Cleveland defensive front that has been solid against the run all year long.

The Ravens Are Not Comfortable Away From Home

Baltimore is 1-3 on the road in 2013, and very easily could be 0-4. The Ravens' lone win on the road was a 26-23 nail-biter over the Miami Dolphins in Week 5.

It's not like Baltimore has been playing quality teams on the road, either. Needless to say, the Broncos are one of the best teams in the NFL, but no one is ever going to describe the 2013 editions of the Buffalo Bills or Pittsburgh Steelers in that sort of fashion, yet the Ravens managed to drop road games to both of those squads.

Hopefully, the FirstEnergy Stadium crowd can do their part this weekend in helping the Browns to shut down a Baltimore team that obviously struggles on the road.

Shaun Heidrick is a Yahoo Contributor who has followed the Cleveland Browns for over 25 years.

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