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Posted on 12/21/2007 9:15 AM
By: CappersPicks.com NFL Football Handicapping Staff
NFL Betting Trends – Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati Bengals
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If this week’s matchup between the Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals turns out to be anything close to the teams’ previous meeting this season in Week 2, a 51-45 win by the Browns, then NFL bettors and fans will be in for a real treat.
The Browns turned their season around that week by naming strong-armed Derek Anderson the starting quarterback after a Week 1 debacle by former Browns starter Charlie Frye.
Now standing at 9-5 and tied for the AFC North division lead with the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Browns are flying high after beating the Buffalo Bills 8-0 last week at home in a swirling snowstorm.
Unfortunately, the Bengals, who possess one of the league’s best offenses, can’t say the same. Cincinnati is a pitiful 5-9 this season after getting beaten 20-13 last week on the road by the lowly San Francisco 49ers.
While the Browns have soared with Anderson making everyone forget about rookie backup Brady Quinn, the Bengals have floundered with a defense that can best be describes as “invisible.”
Anderson is fourth in the AFC with 3,384 passing yards and 26 touchdown passes while Bengals ‘big-name’ quarterback Carson Palmer Palmer has thrown for 3,700 yards and 22 TDs, but has also thrown 17 interceptions – one short of his career-high, set as a rookie in 2004.
The Browns, (9-5 SU, 11-3 ATS, 9-4-1 O/U) are ranked 10th in overall offense, averaging 348.8 yards and 26.3 points per game while the Bengals, (5-9 SU, 5-9 ATS, 6-8 O/U) are ranked seventh in overall offense, averaging 350.3 yards and 23.1 points per game.
The Browns are ranked dead-last in defense, (32nd) allowing 378.4 yards and 25.4 points per game. Cincinnati is ranked 28th in overall defense allowing 347.4 yards and 24.7 points per game.
Here is a look at tonight’s key trends followed by my NFL Betting Free Picks.
Key Browns Trends
The Browns are 4-0 ATS in their last four vs. AFC North.
The Browns are 5-0 ATS in their last five games as a road favorite.
The Browns are 5-0 ATS in their last five games as a road favorite of 0.5-3.0.
Key Bengals Trends
The Bengals are 4-1 ATS in their last five games as an underdog of 0.5-3.0.
The Bengals are 7-15-1 ATS in their last 23 home games.
The Bengals are 4-10-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
Key Totals Trends
The Over is 5-0-1 in Browns last six vs. AFC North.
The Under is 4-0 in Browns last four games on grass.
The Under is 4-0 in Bengals last four home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
The Under is 5-0 in Bengals last five games as an underdog.
Key Head-to-Head Trends
The Favorite is 10-4 ATS in their last 14 meetings.
Analysis: With a division title on the line, I certainly like the Browns to win this game. However, the 3.5-point spread is a bit worrisome, particularly since the Bengals can put points on the board if nothing else. Still, I say the Browns cover the spread – just barely.
NFL Free Picks: Cleveland 28 Cincinnati 24
01:00 PM EST NFL Odds
Cleveland Browns -3½ -110
Cincinnati Bengals +3½ -110
Over 43½ -110
Under 43½ -110
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