Cleveland Browns will be looking to ensure their participation in the post-season play-offs when they welcome the Pittsburgh Steelers to the FirstEnergy Stadium this weekend. The Steelers have already sealed top spot in the AFC North, but a victory should see the Browns claim a wild card place. Breaches of COVId-19 protocols decimated the Browns receiver options against the Jets and they will be hoping to have a full roster to pick from again against the Steelers. Read on to see where the best betting value can be found!
Can Cleveland do it?
Browns coach Kevin Stefanski and quarterback Baker Mayfield were full of remorse after the team lost to the New York Jets last week. Coronavirus played its part in the loss, as the Browns’ receiving options were severely disrupted when four of their top wide receivers were forced to miss the game after spending time in close proximity to linebacker BJ Goodson, who tested positive for COVID-19. Rookie Ja'Marcus Bradley, called up from the practice squad, failed to catch a pass from Mayfield in the game’s dying minutes. Mayfield himself also fumbled on a fourth-down play in the same drive, meaning that the Browns fell to a 23-16 defeat at the Jets.
Pittsburgh enjoyed a much better weekend when they won at home against the Indianapolis Colts to clinch top spot in the AFC North. They trailed the Colts 24-87 late in the third quarter of the game, and failed to score a touchdown in four straight attempts from inside the two-yard line. But then the defense found a spin and forced a Colts punt. Then quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw to Diontae Johnson for a touchdown and the Steelers sparked into life. He went on to throw three touchdown passes in the fourth quarter to take the team to a 28-24 victory and their first divisional title for three years.
That means that head coach Mike Tomlin may well rest some key players for the game against the Browns. That could give the Browns the edge they need to seal their own play-off spot.
Our Pick: Cleveland to win
Our tip for this game is nice and straightforward. We’re expecting Cleveland to win the game and seal a wild card play-off spot. We suspect that Tomlin will be looking to keep his powder dry for the play-offs and will rest some key players to keep them fresh for the post-season. The odds on the Browns winning are -286, so you may need to bet big to win a decent amount. The extra motivation of that wild card spot will see Stefanski’s team home, we believe.
Our pick: Browns to win @ -286 with 888Sport