5 reasons Cleveland Browns will hand San Francisco 49ers first loss in Week 5

Cleveland Browns Dante Pettis (Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images)
Cleveland Browns Dante Pettis (Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images) /
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Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns Joe Schobert (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

3. Browns’ backers

The big problem the defense faces will be tight end George Kittle, who set a tight-end receiving mark with 1,377 yards last season.

This is where the Browns’ linebackers have to step up and fortunately, they have the personnel.

During the preseason, Mack Wilson was described as someone with defensive back skills playing the linebacker position. Wilson notably picked off two passes against the Redskins and this would be an opportune time to play the role of a ball thief.

Wilson has the speed to stay with Kittle, while he’s also athletic and big enough to pose problems for the 49ers tight end.

Joe Schobert is playing like a Pro Bowler and Pro Football Focus grades him out as the 20th best linebacker in the game. In three straight games, Schobert has been a part of “impact” plays. He forced a fumble against the Jets and then got a hand on Jared Goff pass that ended up being intercepted.

Against the Ravens, he laid the first lick on Mark Ingram, while Whitehead finished him off to force another fumble.

Kittle caught 88 balls in his record breaking season. He gets wide open because of Kyle Shanahan’s zone-blocking scheme. The Browns need to always keep an eye on him and if it gets done, they’ll do wonders in slowing down Jimmy G and the offense.