2021 Preseason: 5 Cleveland Browns who need a great game vs Giants

Cleveland Browns (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)
Cleveland Browns (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) /
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Cleveland Browns Malik McDowell
Cleveland Browns Malik McDowell /

3. Cleveland Browns DT Malik McDowell

McDowell was on this list a week ago, but his oblique kept him from game action.

Fortunately, the defensive tackle’s ribs healed enough that he was able to return practice ahead of Cleveland’s joint practices against the Giants.

This is excellent news for fans wanting to see McDowell, who’s never even played in a preseason game since being drafted in the second-round of the 2017 draft.

He seemed to be trending in the right direction, until the injury sidelined him ahead of the preseason opener. He certainly looks the part, but obviously, the issue will be watching McDowell on the field.

Now, with that game in the books, McDowell really needs to excel as Cleveland’s defensive line, constructed mostly of backups, was excellent in Jacksonville. Notably, Sheldon Day had the opening down sack of No. 1 overall pick Trevor Lawrence. Second-year veteran Jordan Elliott also played well.

If McDowell has anything in the tank, the Lions game will be his prime opportunity to show Cleveland took a flyer on him and signed him during the offseason.