Steelers vs. Browns odds
The Browns led the Jets by 13 points with 2 minutes left in the game. Nick Chubb ran inexplicably for a 12-yard touchdown when he was able to get down in bounds to guarantee the win. Then ensued a sequence of true madness that led to their humiliating defeat.
I bet the Browns are happy to play Thursday Night Football to move on from that game as soon as possible.
Steelers vs. Browns Matchup Analysis
Change the dropdowns below to hide or show how the Steelers and Browns match up statistically:
Steelers vs. Browns DVOA breakdown
Overall DVOA 22 22 Passing DVOA 22 24
Rushing DVOA 20 20
Overall DVOA 4 8
Pass DVOA 8 9
Rushing DVOA 1 18
When the Browns have the ball
Jack Conklin does not have an injury designation ahead of Thursday’s game, meaning he will make his season debut. As one of the game’s premier run stoppers, his return couldn’t come at a better time.
The Browns should match Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt with reigning Defensive Player of the Year TJ Watt on injured reserve.
The Patriots averaged 4.9 yards on the first play against the Steelers last week without Watt. I expect the Browns to continue using Jacoby Brissett as their “game manager” quarterback. He attempted one pass of 20 or more yards down the field all season.
In a game where we could see 15-20 mph winds that made throwing the ball difficult, the Browns’ offense was especially designed to thrive in this matchup.
When the Steelers have the ball
The Steelers offense is crumbling right now, and it’s probably the fault of offensive coordinator Matt Canada, Mitch Trubisky and the offensive line. With just three days to prepare for the game, there is no chance of a solution in the week, so I expect their struggles to continue.
Pittsburgh is averaging just 21.4 yards per drive (fewest on third down) and can’t be expected to exploit a major weakness on the Browns’ defense right now. Trubisky is one of the most consistent downfield passers in the league this season, going just 3-of-11 (27%) on passes of 20+ yards downfield.
I’m leaning towards the bottom team for tonight’s game. The Steelers have a 7.5% completion rate on blowouts and are averaging the third-fewest yards per drive (22.2). It will feed into the Browns’ run-heavy and ultra-conservative offense, assuming they have no chance to fix their issues in a short week and will struggle to put up points here.
In this game, the Browns’ offense will need to control the tempo of the ball as it relies on the run game. However, when Cleveland is able to put up points, it is due for some replays. The Browns scored on 52% of their drives, tied for the league lead with the Bills and Chiefs. Based on underlying statistics, we expect them to bring in about 39% of their drivers going forward.
On the other side of the ball, the Browns’ defense scored on 39% of their drives, but the underlying data suggests it should be closer to 30%. So, I think we’re going to see some price on the bottom of the Bunns in the short term.
Unfortunately, that total dropped from 40.5 to 38.5, so I’ll just lean towards the bottom. I would wait to see if this number goes back up to 40.5 before betting on it. I can’t imagine we’ll see the numbers drop further, though.
Be sure to follow me in the action app to get notified if I stop betting on this or anything else on this game. If it goes up to 39 or 39.5 I would consider betting this again.
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