Baltimore Ravens (3-4 SU, 3-4 ATS) vs. Cleveland Browns (3-5 SU, 4-4 ATS)
NFL Week 9
Date and Time: Sunday November 3, 2013 4:25pm EST
Where: FirstEnergy Stadium, Cleveland OH
by Tim, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: Bal. -3/Cle. +3
Over/Under Total: 41
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It’s always a wonderful time when the Old Cleveland Browns (Ravens) come back home to play the new Cleveland Browns! The old Cleveland Browns (Ravens) have 2 Super Bowls and nearly a year-by-year invitation into the NFL post season. The new Cleveland Browns, well…they got stuck with orange and brown, and not much more! This year; Old versus New is as competitive a game as both can hope for. The Browns and the Ravens are both struggling to find a winning formula with disinterested and/or marginal players. The Ravens and Browns are gonna’ “Get it on” in the ‘City That Never Sweeps’; Cleveland, Ohio! Let’s check out these two highly implosive teams and pick a winner!
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The Ravens come into this game off a bye-week after getting whooped by a poor Steelers team 19-16 in Pittsburgh. It might be safe to say that the Ravens are ‘healed up’ and ready to get busy this Sunday…but the only thing hurting in Baltimore is the need for annual exam by a “Heart Surgeon”. Yes, the Ravens did lose a ton of quality talent from last year’s Super Bowl team. But they didn’t lose their Head Coach Jim Harbaugh!? Maybe, all that talk about Harbaugh was caused by ALL that talent Harbaugh had to work with in 2012? This year—The Year of Coaching—the Ravens are 20th overall in offense and 16th in total defense. “Perhaps a winning edge on the field is P-L-A-Y-E-R driven????” No players…no winning? Jus’ sayin’…let’s check out the Clevelanders!!!
When the Browns put Weeden at QB…it isn’t the breeze off Lake Erie or the Fire Hazard Cuyahoga River you’re smelling!!! It’s the offense. Weeden is to the Browns offense what Neville Chamberlain is to 1938 Czechoslovakia or body piercings to Hannah Montana! 3rd String Backup QB Jason Campbell looks like John Elway to Weeden. There is no possible way (or is there??) the Browns would ever put Weeden back on the playing field versus the Ravens…to include if Campbell struggles. And Campbell WILL struggle! The Browns are 24th in offense in the NFL and 7th in total defense. Against the pass, the Browns are sixth overall (probably because no team needs to pass to beat the Browns!). The Browns though, in their defense, are a surprise team in 2013 and covered last week against the 8-0, Kansas City Chiefs. The Browns are 12th in the NFL in Special Teams play and ignoring the offense, the Browns look like a Super Bowl contender!
I’m not sure what the deal is with Campbell? After signing with Cleveland, Campbell is 23-40 for 299 yards and 2 TD’s. But why would a 5 year Starter with the Redskins and Raiders, from Mississippi, played football at Auburn, be stuck signing a goofy contract with Cleveland? Campbell didn’t look bad last week against the Chiefs…but he didn’t look good either?! Campbell looked like Trent Dilfer with mobility…and THAT (mobility) might be the key for this defense-led Browns team! The Ravens have underachieved and Harbaugh has not “instilled” a desire among the players that it is important to compete and overcome TODAY in the NFL to be successful. Film study is great, and using blocking dummies, and timing up passing routes, and communicating in the secondary, and holding onto the ball…these are all great things to be teaching! But Harbaugh must somehow COACH and not TEACH the players, “You are not winning because…You are not Winners! If you do not start winning (Ray Rice, Joe Flacco) today, you will be replaced with human beings who may, in fact, be Winners!” There is no immediacy among Raven Players. Shoot, the whole team looks like they’re on a year long vacation after 10 years at the ‘Ray Lewis Gulag’! The Ravens play like they have no leadership and they are counting wins like they have no leadership. The Browns…on the other hand, look like the Old Browns (Ravens) searching for one single, itsy-bitsy, chess piece turning the New Browns into Winners! That piece is not a slice of Oklahoma Apple Pie, that piece has yet to be discovered and the Brown’s coaching staff hope it’s setting on the bottom of a Campbell’s Soup can!
Tim’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Cleveland Browns +3 and the UNDER
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