3 early matchups to watch as the Chicago Bears take on the Cleveland Browns

Chicago Bears, Justin Fields
Chicago Bears, Justin Fields / Todd Rosenberg/GettyImages
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3) Justin Fields vs. Jim Schwartz

No team in the NFL has allowed fewer passing yards than the Browns. Myles Garrett and the Cleveland pass rush deserve a lot of the credit, but the Browns are good all over the field. They enter the game against Chicago banged up, though, having lost starting safety Grant Delpit and defensive tackles Maurice Hurst and Ogbo Okoronkwo to injury this week. Cleveland is hoping to have top cornerback Denzel Ward back after a three-game absence, and they'll need him to contain D.J. Moore.

Despite the defensive injuries, the Browns have shown incredible resilience all year, so Justin Fields and the Bears offense won't have an easy time moving the ball. Jim Schwartz has long been one of the best defensive coordinators in the league, and the different looks he can create will make things difficult for Justin Fields, no matter who is able to suit up.

Fields played well against the Lions, throwing for 223 yards while running for 58 more, and it's that second stat that interests me. You can't just go into Cleveland and expect to chuck it around the field, and besides, that's not the Bears' game anyway. The forecast is calling for light rain and 14 mph winds, so protecting the ball and controlling the clock will be even more important than usual.

The Browns gave up 59 points in two meetings with the Ravens this year, and this could provide some insight into how the Bears can leave Cleveland with a win on Sunday. Lamar Jackson is a quarterback with a skill set similar to Justin Fields's. Both players can use their legs to pick up big gains on the ground or to buy time to make explosive plays off-schedule.

Jackson had 68 yards rushing in the two games combined, which is admittedly a modest total for him, but the threat of him taking off on any given play kept the Browns' defense honest. He only completed 28 passes over the two games, but he averaged over 14 yards per completion.

Next. 3 notable differences since Justin Fields returned to the Chicago Bears from injury . 3 notable differences since Justin Fields returned to the Chicago Bears from injury . dark

The Bears aren't going to just methodically march down the field on this Browns defense. They'll need to take care of the ball and make big plays, with Fields using his legs and finding D.J. Moore or Darnell Mooney down the field. If they do, they can move to 6-8 and put themselves squarely in the playoff conversation with two winnable home games on tap next.