A best bet and betting analysis of Thursday’s AFC North matchup featuring the favored Browns hosting the Steelers.
A bitter AFC North rivalry kicks off the Week 3 slate on Thursday Night Football when Nick Chubb and the Browns host Diontae Johnson and the Steelers with sole possession of the AFC North on the line.
Chubb, who has rushed for 228 yards and three touchdowns, has seen his odds in the 2022 “Rushing Yards Leader” futures market shrink to +450 odds. Chubb trails Giants running Saquon Barkley (+550) by eight yards (238) for the early lead, but interestingly is listed ahead of him in the overall betting market.
Since taking over as the Steelers’s head coach in 2007, Mike Tomlin has posted 15 consecutive seasons of .500 or better football, while guiding Pittsburgh to a 24-6-1 (.800) record against Cleveland. Much of that success was due to the talents of quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who was 26-3-1 in 30 career games versus the Browns. The Steelers have absolutely dominated the Browns dating back to 1999, posting a 41-6-1 (.872) record over the last 48 meetings.
The Browns are 5.5-point home favorites at SI Sportsbook but have been difficult to trust recently at FirstEnergy Stadium, posting a dismal 1-5 against the spread (ATS) mark over their last six home games.
- Spread: Pittsburgh +5.5 (-118) | Cleveland -5.5 (+100)
- Moneyline: PIT (+175) | CLE (-213)
- Total: 38.5 – Over (-110) | Under (-110)
- Public (Spread) Betting Percentages: PIT 63% | CLE 37%
- Game Info: Sept. 22, 2022 | 8:20 p.m. ET | NBC
The line has steamed since its opening of the Browns as a three-point home favorite over the Steelers at SI Sportsbook to Cleveland now being displayed with a 5.5-point demand. The game total, which opened at 40.5, has dropped to 38.5.
Pittsburgh, after upsetting the Bengals in Week 1, fell to the Patriots, 17-14 as three-point home underdogs in Week 2. The Steelers will be without star linebacker T.J. Watt for the second consecutive week and will try to slow down the dominant Cleveland ground game. The Browns own the NFL’s best ground attack through two weeks, averaging an eye-popping 200.5 rushing yards per game.
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The Browns, who blew a 13-point lead in the final two minutes against the Jets in Week 2, will try and bounce back on a short week. Cleveland will once again lean heavily on their dominant one-two combo of Chubb and Kareem Hunt.
Chubb has averaged 66.1 yards per game on the ground in seven games against the Steelers. However, the powerful back should find less resistance due to Watt’s absence. The Steelers surrender 128.5 rushing yards per game to running backs.
Tomlin has guided the Steelers to seven wins in the last 10 meetings against the Browns, while exhibiting a lucrative 5-1 ATS mark over the past three seasons. Respected money believes this will be a grind-it affair and have backed the under, a market that has cashed in five of the last seven matchups between these rivals.
BET: Under 38.5 (-110)
- Cleveland is 3-7 ATS in its last 10 games dating back to last season
- Cleveland is 1-5 ATS in its last six home games at FirstEnergy Stadium
- The Steelers are 5-1 ATS in their last six meetings versus the Browns
- Pittsburgh is 7-3 SU in the last 10 matchups with Cleveland
- The under has cashed in five of the last seven meetings (71%)
2022 SI Betting NFL: 0-1-1 ATS & Props 3-5 -1.85 Units
2021 SI Betting Monday Night Football: 9-8 ATS & Props 16-12 +5.75 Units
2021 SI Betting Playoffs: 8-7-1 ATS & Prop Wagers +4.00 Units
2021 SI Betting NFL Overall: 53-44-1 ATS & Props +14.22 Units
2020 SI Betting NFL: 72-58-1 ATS (55%)
Frankie Taddeo is a successful high-stakes fantasy football player who created the first-ever DFS program ever offered in a Las Vegas sportsbook. Frankie is SI Betting's Senior Analyst and provides his significant experience and resources in the sports betting scene. You can follow Frankie on Twitter @Frankie_Fantasy for his latest betting and fantasy insights from Las Vegas.