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The Cleveland Browns will host the Seattle Seahawks here in an AFC vs. NFC battle. The Seahawks are riding high and enter this one at 4-1, while the Browns have hit rock-bottom and sit at 2-3. Baker Mayfield vs. Russell Wilson will be fun, and these teams only meet once every four years so it's a special occasion. Oddsmakers have this game as close to even, so it's expected to be a tight one.
The Seahawks have taken a backseat in the NFC West the past couple of years, and they're looking to prove that they can hang with the Rams in 2019. They took a big step toward proving that last Thursday night, when they beat Los Angeles in a huge primetime game. Now they'll need to keep that momentum going on the road here when they travel to Cleveland.
The Browns are licking their wounds right now, as they're coming off an embarrassing loss on national TV to the 49ers. They were playing on Monday Night Football, so they'll have a quick turnaround. They need to let go of it all quickly, and it'll be interesting to see how they respond. This is the most adversity Mayfield has faced in his young career, and I can't wait to see what he looks like.
Seahawks For Real?The Seattle Seahawks are off to a hot start, and they've looked like a playoff team in the NFC so far. While the 4-1 record is impressive though, I'm still far from sold. I'll be honest, I was low on this Seahawks team coming into the year. I saw plenty of reasons to expect regression, and I don't think my concerns have been satisfied. They've been getting pretty lucky, and could easily have a losing record.
In Week 1 they only beat the lowly Bengals by one point as a massive favorite, and they only won because Cincy fumbled four times. In Week 2 they caught another break when Ben Roethlisberger got hurt in the first half. This past week they got fortunate yet again, when Greg Zuerlein missed a potential game-winning field goal in the final seconds of their win over the Rams that he almost always makes. That's not a sustainable pattern, and it suggests things could come crumbling down. Russell Wilson is fantastic, and he's already worked some serious magic this year. Unfortunately, he's stuck with an incompetent offensive coaching staff, and offensive coordinator Brain Schottenheimer is stuck in the 1980's.
Wilson only struggles when he's pressured and kept in the pocket, and he's now facing one of the best defensive end duos in the league in Myles Garrett and Olivier Vernon. If Garrett and Vernon can collapse the edges and keep him in the pocket, it could be a long day for Seattle's offense. The Seahawks' defense has a strong brand name cause of their past success, but it's not that good anymore. They gave up over 400 yards passing to Andy Dalton, and they just let Los Angeles do whatever they wanted last Thursday.
Browns Need This OneWell, it's put up or shut up time for the Browns. After endless hype this offseason, Cleveland came out flat to start the year. They then rebounded a bit, before getting humiliated this past week on Monday Night Football. They got stomped by the 49ers from the opening whistle, and Baker Mayfield somehow only completed eight passes.
They've been getting clowned online and torn apart by the media, so to say this is a pivotal game for them would be a massive understatement. People are beginning to question whether Mayfield is this team's quarterback of the future, and whether Freddie Kitchens is in over his head as a head coach. Fortunately for Browns fans, I think everybody is overreacting. It was a tough spot going across the country for a road primetime game against a 49ers team coming off their by week, and they never stood a chance. They're coming back home now, and we should see them bring their best effort. Mayfield is a fiery competitor, and he usually bounces back well from adversity.
Myles Garrett off the edge isn’t fair. pic.twitter.com/LCLfsLJniE— Everything Cleveland (@EverythingCLE_) October 8, 2019
The main problem with the offense has been the offensive line, and Mayfield has been struggling with pressure. Luckily, the Seahawks have had one of the league's worst pass-rushes so far. Seattle only has ten total sacks this season, and if Mayfield has time to throw he should be able to pick apart a relatively weak secondary. Cleveland's defense has been playing pretty well, even though their secondary has been banged up. If they can get even one of their young stud cornerbacks back, Greedy Williams or Denzel Ward, which it looks like they might, it'll be a huge boost here. Monitor their injury report closely.
- 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games following a straight up loss
- 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games following an ATS loss
- 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games after scoring less than 15 points in their previous game
- 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games in Week 6
- 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games following a straight up win
- 2-5-1 ATS in their last 8 games after accumulating more than 250 yards passing in their previous game
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
I love the Browns here. This is an absolute must-win game for Cleveland, and I think we see their best effort here. They should be circling the wagons, and come out on fire after their primetime embarrassment on Monday. Seattle is incredibly overrated, and they very easily could be 1-4 if they hadn't gotten lucky a few times. Their run of catching unlikely breaks can't possibly continue, and they're due for some serious regression. Mayfield should finally have time to throw against a weak pass-rush, and the Browns will easily win this one.
Prediction: Browns +2
Full-Game Total Pick
I also like the under a lot here. This Seahawks offense is poorly coached, and I think they'll struggle early on heading east for an early kickoff. Seattle loves to endlessly run the ball, which will help kill a lot of clock in this game. This Browns offense is broken at the moment and Mayfield has regressed, so even though I think they'll be better here, I'm still not expecting too much.