Cleveland Browns Betting Preview: Browns Are Primed to Deliver on Preseason Hype

By | September 3, 2021

It was definitely a breakthrough season for the Cleveland Browns last year. They made the playoffs, beat the rival Steelers, and pushed Kansas City in a close playoff loss. Had star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. been healthy, or the defense been better, they could have gone even further.

Nevertheless, last season set some pretty lofty expectations for this year. And given their performance last year and high potential, those expectations are very justified. What a difference quality coaching can make.

Will they deliver on those lofty expectations and bring historic success to Cleveland?

Cleveland Browns 2021 Schedule and Futures Odds

To keep up with the Browns’ results and updated futures odds throughout the 2021 NFL season, check out our dedicated Cleveland Browns page.

Cleveland Browns 2021 Futures Odds

  • Super Bowl LVI Odds: +1600
  • Odds to Win the AFC Championship: +750
  • Odds to Win the AFC North: +155
  • 2021 NFL Season Win Total: OVER 10.5 (-105), UNDER 10.5 (-115)
  • Odds to Make the NFL Playoffs: YES -250, NO +200

Cleveland Browns futures odds are via FanDuel Sportsbook as of Friday, September 3, 2021.

Cleveland Browns 2021 Schedule

Date, Matchup, Time, and TV Broadcast Information

Week 1

Sunday, September 12, 2021: at Kansas City Chiefs, 4:25 p.m. ET, CBS

Week 2

Sunday, September 19, 2021: vs Houston Texans, 1:00 p.m. ET, CBS

Week 3

Sunday, September 26, 2021: vs Chicago Bears, 1:00 p.m. ET, FOX

Week 4

Sunday, October 3, 2021: at Minnesota Vikings, 1:00 p.m. ET, CBS

Week 5

Sunday, October 10, 2021: at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. ET, CBS

Week 6

Sunday, October 17, 2021: vs Arizona Cardinals, 4:05 p.m. ET, CBS

Week 7

Thursday, October 21, 2021: vs Denver Broncos, 8:20 p.m. ET, FOX & NFL Network

Week 8

Sunday, October 31, 2021: vs Pittsburgh Steelers, 1:00 p.m. ET, CBS

Week 9

Sunday, November 7, 2021: at Cincinnati Bengals, 1:00 p.m. ET, CBS

Week 10

Sunday, November 14, 2021: at New England Patriots, 1:00 p.m. ET, CBS

Week 11

Sunday, November 21, 2021: vs Detroit Lions, 1:00 p.m. ET, FOX

Week 12

Sunday, November 28, 2021: at Baltimore Ravens, 8:20 p.m. ET, NBC

Week 13

BYE WEEK

Week 14

Sunday, December 12, 2021: vs Baltimore Ravens, 1:00 p.m. ET, CBS

Week 15

Sunday, December 19, 2021: vs Las Vegas Raiders, TBD

Week 16

Saturday, December 25, 2021: at Green Bay Packers, 4:30 p.m. ET, FOX & NFL Network

Week 17

Monday, January 3, 2022: at Pittsburgh Steelers, 8:15 p.m. ET, ESPN

Week 18

Sunday, January 9, 2022: vs Cincinnati Bengals, 1:00 p.m. ET, CBS

Cleveland Browns 2021 Season and Betting Preview

Key Additions and Subtractions

Additions

  • DE Jadeveon Clowney
  • CB Troy Hill
  • FS John Johnson III
  • MLB Antony Walker
  • OLB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah

If you couldn’t tell, the defense was the priority this offseason. Clowney has never really delivered on his physical gifts, but he can still be a presence on the edge. Hill and Johnson upgrade the secondary and come from the Rams, who really value defense. Walker was a tackling machine in Indianapolis; his only flaw is that he was not the playmaker fellow LB Darius Leonard is. Owusu-Koramoah has the speed and athleticism to slot in right away as a starter. He was their second-round pick. Top pick Greg Newsome II might also be a “starter” too, if the Browns play more nickel.

Subtractions

  • DE Olivier Vernon
  • LB BJ Goodson
  • CB Terrance Mitchell
  • DT Larry Ogunjobi

The Browns had to create some room for the players they brought in above. Vernon was second on the team in sacks last season, and Goodson led the team in tackles. Both are quality players but their replacements are upgrades.

2021 Season Preview

Cleveland has a great offensive line and is able to dominate with their running game. Sure they want quarterback Baker Mayfield to advance a little more, but they can win offensively with the formula they have. And if OBJ is healthy and happy, they have a dynamic playmaker that teams have to account for. Running backs Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt are one of the best duos in the league, and once this team gets a lead they can really drop the hammer on teams.

Cleveland’s offseason additions should make them better on the defensive side of the ball. Last year they gave up 30+ points seven times during the regular season. If the defense can make that a rare occurrence, the Browns can be one of the best teams in the league. Myles Garrett is fantastic and should have a monster season, and the upgraded secondary looks like one of the league’s best on paper.

The Browns look like one of the most complete teams in the NFL. Their offense functions at a high level, and they have a couple of players who can pop in the receiving game and make big plays. The defense should make strides to make this a very balanced team, capable of hanging with everyone on their schedule.

2021 Betting Preview

In my mind, I would rate Cleveland no better than third in the AFC right now behind Kansas City and Buffalo.

The main reason I like them less than Buffalo is that I am not that high on Baker Mayfield. Nevertheless, the futures on the Browns can be enticing. I don’t like the way they match up with the Chiefs, but their path could be clearer if someone else eliminates the Chiefs. Their Super Bowl and AFC odds are very interesting, and if you think they are a shoo-in for the playoffs, there are some hedging opportunities. The Browns are not my pick, but I understand all the buzz.

In the AFC North the Browns and Ravens are very close to each other, with the Ravens holding a slight edge at the books. I definitely disagree. Cleveland is my pick to win the division; I just wish the payoff was a little more. It would not surprise me if they win the division with ease.

I like Cleveland’s team total a lot as well. Their Week 1 visit to Kansas City is a likely loss, but some books let you bet win totals even after the season starts. With that in mind, the play might be to take that loss and then jump in. After that loss, I think they have a great chance to win 10 games in a row. They play Baltimore in back-to-back games with their bye week in between, and those games will likely determine the division. Afterward they can split and still get us to that over. The schedule lines up for a 12-win season to me.

Prop to consider: Kevin Stefanski Coach of the year +2400

Betting on coaches is hardly fun, but at least we don’t have to worry about them getting hurt in Week 3. I’m surprised that Stefanski’s odds are not much shorter, given all of the buzz surrounding the Browns. He is given a lot of credit for the offense, and he does not have to win the Super Bowl to take the award. If they beat the Chiefs in the opener he should be the front runner, and if he follows that up with a division title, I like his chances.

Also, if you want to take a big swing, OBJ is +3100 to lead the league in receiving yards. If he is healthy, he is still one of the league’s top receivers. But will Mayfield throw it enough for him to rack up that many yards?

Final Thought

I am not from Ohio, but I get the buzz surrounding the Browns this season. Mayfield seems to have settled in, and on the surface, they look like a better team than they were a year ago. That creates some inviting betting options. I am not sold on them being a true title contender yet, but I can see them playing in the AFC Championship Game for the first time since the days of Bernie Kosar. I think we can make some money with this team along the way.

The post Cleveland Browns Betting Preview: Browns Are Primed to Deliver on Preseason Hype first appeared on Betting News.

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