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Browns not lacking for confidence heading into Sunday’s game

Players not worried about former coach Hue Jackson or the Bengals. But can they back up their talk?

Cleveland Browns v New Orleans Saints Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns have made two things pretty clear in the run up to Sunday’s game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

The first is that no one is worried about anything that former head coach Hue Jackson may share with the Bengals.

Quarterback Baker Mayfield got the ball rolling earlier in the week in response to a question about Jackson sharing offensive secrets with the Bengals:

Safety Jabrill Peppers doubled down on that on Friday, according to

“We wish him the best but we’re still going to go out there and kick their ass Sunday. I don’t think it’s an advantage but why wouldn’t he give away certain things that will help their chances at a W? But like I said, man, in this league everything is on tape. So if you watch the tape, watch the game clips from actual T.V. copies, you can hear all the verbiage so everything is out there for people to see. It’s just much easier when you don’t have to go out there and look for it.’’

It is understandable as the Browns shouldn’t have to fear the worst head coach in the history of the NFL now that he is not working on their side of the field.

Cleveland’s task may be a bit easier as Cincinnati wide receiver A.J. Green is listed as questionable for the game. If Green can’t go that’s a big plus for the Browns as they won’t have to worry about a player who has 62 receptions and seven touchdowns in 13 career games against Cleveland.

Green’s potential absence has safety Damarious Randall fired up, per

“If they don’t have A.J., they’re getting their ass beat. I hope he plays — to make the game a little more interesting.”

It is nice to hear the players showing confidence, but Sunday’s game still presents a challenge, even if Green is not in the lineup.

The Bengals may not be the Pittsburgh Steelers or Baltimore Ravens, but they still have won seven consecutive games against the Browns. During that stretch the Browns have been outscored 213-63 and have held the Bengals to under 30 points just once.

Muhammad Ali once said that “it’s not bragging if you can back it up.”

The Browns are starting to talk a lot about Sunday’s game.

Now they just need to back it up.