One of the oldest and most storied rivalries in the NFL is the Browns-Steelers rivalry though it hasn’t been maybe the most competitive in recent history. The two teams will play for the 135th time tonight; the Steelers holding a 73-58-1 advantage in the series.
Cleveland running back and city native Kareem Hunt said, “It’s a big game. It’s Browns vs. Steelers. I’ve been watching this my whole life.”
Most sportbooks have the Browns favored by three still despite more action on the Steelers. That’s the line at Caesars, Westgate SuperBook, and Wynn. But MGM has the line shorter at 2.5, just like FanDuel and DraftKings.
The Casino.org website says the over/under is at 40.5 points, and the moneyline around Pittsburgh +130, Cleveland -150. A $100 bet on those odds nets $130 and $66.67 respectively.
Tides Have Turned
It wasn’t the Steelers but the Browns that had all the hype entering the 2019-20 NFL season and thoughts on the Super Bowl even.
The Browns’ odds of winning the Vince Lombardi Trophy were as short as 14/1. That was tied for the fifth-shortest line in the whole league.
It was an astonishing reversal for a franchise which went 1-31 in 2-16 and 2017 before having some success with QB Baker Mayfield in 2018 which resulted in a 7-8-1 season. But the Browns have been a big disappointment in 2019. Mayfield ranks in the bottom five in completion percentage (59.9 percent), interceptions (12), and rating (75.2).
The Browns have looked good at times – beating the AFC North leading Baltimore Ravens, a team now 7-2. But more often, they’ve looked horrendous. Their Super Bowl odds are at 100/1.
Almost all hope was lost for the Steelers’ 2019-20 campaign after the team started the season 0-2 and had to continue without QB Ben Roethlisberger for the year in Week 2. The Super Bowl odds of the team went from 30/1 to 200/1.
However, second-year QB Mason Rudolph has astonished even the most faithful of Terrible Towel fanatics. He’s thrown for 1,330 yards and 11 touchdowns against only four interceptions. He’s guided Pittsburgh to wins in five of the previous six games, including the last four.
That 200/1 Super Bowl line has been slashed to 40/1 as a result.
Playoffs Possible for Cleveland
Cleveland surely isn’t where they expected to be through 10 weeks. However, after a hard first half, the Browns can manage the rest of the season.
Oddsmakers say Cleveland is still in the playoff picture, but they’re certainly a bit out of focus. FanDuel’s line on them making the playoffs is Yes +650, No -1450. For Yes, that’s implied odds of 13.33 percent.
Pittsburgh is in a much better position through Week 10. The Steelers’ odds to reach the postseason are at Yes -130, No -104. For Yes, the implied odds are 56.52 percent.
Of course, the lines will be adjusted following the result of tonight’s rivalry on Lake Erie.