Cincinnati (0-1) at Cleveland (0-1), 8:20 p.m. on NFL Network. They share a state. They both have top QB draft picks (Joe Burrow – Cincinnati, Baker Mayfield – Cleveland). They share a divison. They’re both 0-1 to start the season. Separated by 249 miles along Interstate 71, Cincinnnati and Cleveland meet in the week two opener at First Energy Stadium.

The Bengals had a chance against the Los Angeles Chargers to send their game into overtime at Paul Brown Stadium last Sunday but K Randy Bullock’s 31-yard field goal try with seven seconds left sailed wide to the right, giving the Bengals a 16-13 loss, ruining Burrow’s professional debut. Los Angeles took the lead for keeps in the fourth quarter, using a 5-yard rushing TD by rookie RB Joshua Kelly and a 22-yard field goal by Michael Badgely. Cincinnati would get the ball back with 3:08 and would get themselves as close as the Chargers’ 13-yard line but Bullock’s try sailed wide to the right. The Bengals, who led 7-6 at the intermission and 13-6 at the end of three quarters, were out-rushed by the Chargers 155-122 with Chargers RB Austin Elker leading the way for all rushers with 84 yards, while Joe Mixon led the Bengals with 69. Burrow, the team’s top draft pic, threw for 193 yards but was sacked three times and threw an interception, while Chargers signal caller Tyrod Taylor (who replaced the departed Philip Rivers) threw for 208 yards with a pair of sacks but no interceptions. Cincinnati went 6 of 14 on third down and kept the ball for 29:50, while the Chargers ruled the clock and kept the pigskin for 30:10, going 6 of 16 on third down, 0 for 2 on fourth down.

Cleveland was held to a first-quarter TD pass from Mayfield to TE David Njoku as Baltimore and Lamar Jackson took the Browns to task 38-6 at M&T Bank Stadium Sunday afternoon. Njoku’s TD catch would pull the Browns to within 6 with 1:41 left in the first quarter before the Ravens, leading 24-6 at the intermission, went on to score their next 28 points unchallenged. Cleveland did manage to out-rush Baltimore 138-107 (Browns RB Kareem Hunt led all rushers with 72 yards) and Mayfield threw for 189 yards with the Njoku TD toss but threw an interception, while Jackson threw for 275 yards and three TDs without an interception (both Jackson and Mayfield were sacked twice; Ravens WR Marquise Brown led all recievers with 101 yards). Baltimore went 6 of 11 on third down and kept the ball for 29:58, while the Browns actually ruled the clock, keeping the pigskin for 30:02, while going 3 for 12 on third down, 0 of 3 on fourth down.

The Bengals lead the series 51-42 (which includes contests that were played at Riverfront and Municipal Stadiums) and have outscored Cleveland 2,038-1,856. The two clubs split their two meetings in the Buckeye State in 2019, each winning at home.

Their first meeting took place along the shores of Lake Erie in week 14 and the Browns were 27-19 winners at First Energy Stadium. Cleveland led 14-13 at the intermission, then floored the gas in the final 30 minutes of action, outscoring Cincinnati 13-6 in that frame of time. Cincinnati out-rushed Cleveland 179-146, with Mixon leading all rushers with 146 yards and a TD, while Cleveland was led by Nick Chubb, who tallied 106 rushing yards. Mayfield threw for 192 yards but was picked off twice and sacked once, while Andy Dalton tallied 262 yard with a pair of sacks and an interception. Cleveland was 7 of 12 on third down conversions along the shores of Lake Erie and held the pigskin for 25:29, while the Bengals actually ruled the clock, holding on the ball for 34:31, going 3 of 12 on third down, 1 of 2 on fourth down.

Cincinnati would get revenge on their instate and divisional rivals in the season finale along the shores of the Ohio River, sending Bengals fans home happy with the 33-23 win at Paul Brown Stadium. Cincinnati led 20-16 at the break and never looked back, outscoring Cleveland 13-7 in the final 30 minutes of play. This time, it would be Cincinnati out-rushing Cleveland 179-74 with Mixon rushing for 162 yards and a pair of TDs (Chubb had 41 yards to lead Cleveland); Dalton threw for 190 yards and a TD (he was sacked once and threw an interception), while Mayfield threw for 279 yards and three TDs (one to Odell Beckham Jr.) but was sacked six times and threw three interceptions. The Bengals were 9 of 14 on third down tries and rule, d the clock as they would keep the ball for 34:41, while the Browns (4 for 13 on third down, 1 of 1 on fourth down), kept the pigskin for 25:19.

In the week 14 contest, the Browns barely missed the 8 1/2-point spread with their 8-point win along the shores of Lake Erie but both teams took care of the 42 1/2 over/under, tallying 46 points. In the week 17 season finale along the shores of the Ohio River, Cleveland was favored by 3 and the Bengals took care of the spread, winning by 10 at Paul Brown Stadium and both clubs took care of the 44 1/2 over/under, tallying 56 points. Cleveland’s favored by 7 1/2 along the shores of Lake Erie and the over/under’s 46. Over the last few years, these teams have been dismal to say the least. For the winner, they’ll even their record; for the loser, they got a lot of work to do even though it’s early in the season. Cleveland may not cover the 7 1/2 but they do take the win at home.

Broadcast Information: 8:20 p.m. on NFL Network: Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Erin Andrews (field reporter), Kristina Pink (field reporter); NATIONAL RADIO: Westwood One: Dan Miller, Tony Boselli; SIRIUS: 81 (Cincinnati), 83 (Cleveland); XM: 226 (Cincinnati), 225 (Cleveland)

Referee: Shawn Smith

Injury Report

Cincinnati
OUT: DT Geno Atkins (shoulder), DT Mike Daniels (groin), G Xavier Su’a-Filo (ankle), S Shawn Williams (calf)

Cleveland
OUT: CB Kevin Johnson (liver), LB Jacob Phillips (knee), CB Greedy Williams (shoulder), LB Mack Wilson (knee)
QUESTIONABLE: T Jack Conklin (ankle, finger), T Christopher Hubbard (ankle), WR Jarvis Landry (hip), C J.C. Tretter (knee), DE Olivier Vernon (abdomen), T Jedrick Wills (shin)

Weather: Clear and 65 degrees

Broadcast information, officials and injury report courtesy the National Football League, odds courtesy Don Best, weather information courtesy The Weather Channel.