The Green Bay Packers will take a preseason home stand against the Cleveland Browns, in what figures to be a lopsided matchup Thursday Night at Lambeau Field at 8pm EST (7pm CT).
You can watch the game online here.
While the Packers have one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL in Aaron Rodgers, there are major questions marks at the running back position. Green Bay chose not to bring back former starter Ryan Grant this year, which left them with James Starks to take over the job. In their first preseason game against the San Diego Chargers, rookie Mark Tyler made his NFL debut but struggled to break off any big runs.
To help bolster their running game, the Packers recently signed free agent Cedric Benson to possibly share duties with Starks. Starks will miss the game against Cleveland due to a turf toe injury, so Benson and second year man Alex Green will have an opportunity to shine.
Good news for Green Bay is the play of backup quarterback Graham Harrell who tossed 15 completions for 137 yards and a touchdown in the Pack's 21-13 loss to San Diego Aug. 9th. The team also saw great play out of their first round draft pick Nick Perry. The rookie defensive end earned a sack and three tackles against the Chargers in his first preseason game.
The Browns also have a questionable backfield after their star rookie Trent Richardson underwent arthroscopic knee surgery. Apparently the Browns expect to have Richardson back by the first week of the regular season. In Richardson's absence, Cleveland handed the ball off to Montario Hardesty, Brandon Jackson, and Chris Ogbonnaya.
The Browns other big time rookie, Brandon Weeden, had a mediocre debut in his first NFL action against the Detroit Lions. The 28-year-old quarterback only completed 3 of his 9 passes and also suffered an interception. Hopefully it was just the preseason jitters for Weeden, as the Browns have deemed him their starter for the 2012-13 NFL season.
Even though Weeden got the starting nod, he doesn't have much room for error. Cleveland quarterbacks Colt McCoy and Seneca Wallace were significantly better than Weeden against the Lions. Weeden will need to play well at Green Bay and prove himself for the remainder of preseason in order to keep his title of starting quarterback.
Green Bay 14 Cleveland 3