The Cleveland Browns 2022 NFL season officially no longer has playoff hopes. The 1% chance that they had, basically, since losing to the Cincinnati Bengals, went out the window with their loss to the New Orleans Saints.
Now, the best thing the team can hope for is to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 18 and not finish last in the division. That shouldn’t be a high priority, getting Deshaun Watson ready and keeping a few key players healthy for 2023 should be.
The NFL draft also has lost some luster for Browns fans as the team traded away a ton of draft picks to acquire Watson including their own first and third-round picks this upcoming year. They will get a third-rounder as a compensatory selection and have a couple of extra mid-round picks due to trades.
Going into Christmas Day, Cleveland is one of eight teams officially eliminated from the playoffs. They are the only one of those teams to have more than five victories. With three games Sunday and one on Monday, the team’s draft slotting after Week 16 could be impacted by two games:
Green Bay vs Miami - A Packers loss would tie them with the Browns at 6-9, a win would put them at 7-8.
Tampa Bay vs Arizona - The Buccaneers are also 6-8 going into this game while the reeling Cardinals are 4-10. Both teams could be near the Browns at the end of the year but, for slotting after Week 16, a Tampa win is what would help Cleveland.