This Sunday afternoon at 1 PM (Eastern Time) the San Francisco 49ers, a team that plays its games as a member of the West Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) will take the field against the Cleveland Browns, a squad that is in the North Division of the American Football Conference (AFC).
The game will have no impact on “the playoff picture” in either conference because the visiting 49ers have a Won-Loss record of 4-8 and are in last place while the home team Cleveland Browns have managed to win just two of twelve games played and are also in last place.
These two squads have underperformed since the season began way back in September and, as a result, they will be starting their winter vacations when other squads are participating in playoff games. The question that fans of the National Football League (NFL) or more specifically, the Cleveland Browns will be asking themselves will likely have everything to do with whether or not it is worthwhile to attend the game.
The answer for any true fan of the sport is, and always will be, a resounding yes. Professional football is fun and exciting, often filled with great plays. Attendance at a game, even one between losing teams that have nothing at stake except the possibility of a roster spot on next year’s squad, makes sense.
So it will come as no surprise if the team’s true fans show up in large numbers this Sunday afternoon. The true believers will be able to enjoy their morning tailgate parties and then they can root loudly for the home team Browns as Johnny Manziel, their promising young second year quarterback, leads his team on the gridiron.
As every fan knows, football teams become successful when they have a franchise quarterback calling signals and throwing spirals to speedy wide receivers like Travis Benjamin. Johnny Manziel was drafted to be that kind of quarterback. Some off-field issues have slowed his progress, but Manziel will be getting his big chance beginning this Sunday.
It should be reason enough to make fans of the Browns, the only team without a logo on the helmet, to fill the stands and keep the noise level as high as possible.
There is no question that Manziel has the kind of skills that can turn him into a very successful signal caller. He just has to showcase those talents on the gridiron in a game against an opposing NFL team.
It has been a long time since the Cleveland Browns have been relevant and a participant in the postseason. This team from Ohio will not be playing games in January once again, but if Manziel provides leadership from behind center, if he can pass accurately to receivers all over the field, the Cleveland Browns will have something to build on for the 2016-2017 Season and may once again be like the squad that dominated the National Football League more than fifty years ago.
Of course, the San Francisco 49ers, another team with quarterback issues, has seen flashes of great play from QB Blaine Gabbert. But when Sunday comes along, the 49er defense will be doing everything possible to make life on the field uncomfortable for Johnny Manziel.
Courtesy of the New York Post