Week 10 is here and kicks off with the always popular Battle of Ohio as the Bengals take on the Browns this evening. These teams are very even so far this year, and their records would indicate that, with only a Bengals tie being the difference. For the first time in what seems like forever both Ohio squads have legitimate playoff shots, making tonight’s encounter that much more intriguing. Cleveland is fresh off a victory against the Bucs in Week 9, a game that saw a reappearance of their run game. Cincinnati meanwhile is fresh off a narrow defeat of the lowly Jaguars. Cincy seemed to start the year well but have been vulnerable ever since the first few weeks. Tonight is a big game and we’ve got you covered from all angles at The Sports Geek. Week 9 wasn’t the best but we do tend to bounce back, and that begins tonight. Read on below for our official wager and full game breakdown and analysis.
Browns vs. Bengals Betting Odds:
Cleveland Browns +7 (-110)
@ Cincinnati Bengals -7 (-110)
Over 45 (-110)
Under 45 (-110)
Betting odds provided by Bovada.lv
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Browns vs. Bengals Pick:
Simply put, these two teams are a lot more evenly matched than the general public tends to believe. The Browns are a solid squad and that was fully demonstrated last week in a complete victory over the Buccaneers. In that game, the presence of a run game proved to be huge. Ben Tate was plodding along for Cleveland in recent weeks, but the infusion of Terrance West really helped. Look for West to take more of a lead role moving forward and that’s only going to enhance Brian Hoyer and an already solid Browns team. Tonight, that run game will be especially crucial to controlling the ball and game clock against a Bengals squad that cannot stop the run. Cincinnati enters this contest sitting 29th in the NFL in run defense, conceding an average of 4.79 yards per carry. Last week, they gave up an astonishing 122 yards to the lowly Jaguars and Denard Robinson. Robinson by the way used to play QB at Michigan. West should have a monstrous game, while the Bengals pass rush shouldn’t concern Hoyer. Hoyer will have plenty of time to pick out receivers and move the chains. Expect a nice evening from the Browns when they’ve got the ball.
On the other side of the football, like their cross-state rivals the Bengals too have a young back making some noise. Jeremy Hill stepped up last week with Giovanni Bernard being hurt and he’ll have to have yet another big game if his team is going to enjoy success tonight. The Browns defense vs. the run also isn’t that great, but should be able to limit Dalton through the air. Even with A.J. Green back, you still have to wonder if he’ll be limited, and plus, this Browns team has only conceded twelve passing TD’s, while netting 10 interceptions. It’s a dangerous secondary that Dalton will need to be weary of tonight. Combine that with the fact that the Browns bring a solid pass rush, and Cincinnati’s usual high-flying attack might come down a notch tonight.
Bank on lots of points and a close encounter between these Ohio rivals tonight. I can’t really understand why the Browns are getting a full touchdown in this spot, as these two teams are pretty much equal in my mind. While Cleveland may lack some of Cincinnati’s star power, this remains a complete football team that does the little things the right way. They play hard-nosed football and will keep things very tight to the home team this evening. Take the points and back the Browns +7 to kick off a winning Week 10.
PICK = Browns +7 (-110)