Baltimore Ravens vs. Cleveland Browns Point Spread – Pick ATS 12/17/2017

Baltimore Ravens (7-6 SU, 7-5 ATS) vs. Cleveland Browns (0-13 SU, 3-10 ATS)
NFL Week 15
Date/Time: Sunday, December 17th, 2017 1:00 PM ET
Where: FirstEnergy Stadium Cleveland, OH
TV: CBS
by Keith, Expert Football Handicapper, Predictem.com

Point Spread: BAL -7/CLE +7
Over/Under Total: 40

The AFC North as described by many is one of the NFLs most physical and brutal divisions. The Baltimore Cleveland rivalry typifies this narrative. There is also the tale that connects these two franchises which is one full of acrimony and betrayal. The Browns were created as an expansion team when the original Cleveland Browns moved to Baltimore to become the Ravens. Essentially, this contest is a clash of one team against its former and future self. Regardless of these dynamics, Baltimore has enjoyed a lot of success in these match-ups. This is because the rivalry series has been all Ravens as of recent. Baltimore has won the last four meetings between both sides and they are 10-1 SU in the previous ten meetings between the two. In the most recent meeting in Baltimore in September, the Ravens defeated the Browns at M&T Bank Stadium by a score of 24-10. However, Baltimore is headed to Cleveland against a Browns team once again desperate for a win.

Out of the chute we have seen action on the Browns which has diminished the line by a point to its current station. Nevertheless much of the forums love the Ravens in this spot as a result of Baltimores recent scourge of victories and impressive form overall. The Ravens though they lost on Sunday Night Football in their epic bout with rival Pittsburgh, might have won a lot of fervor and affection. The Ravens fell by just a point in a 39-38 shootout against arguably the NFLs best team on its own field. Given the positive impression this is bound to leave whilst performing on a national stage, it is expected to see Baltimore get action this week against the worst team in the NFL. The Browns are classified as the kick-around team in the NFL. After all, this outfit has won just one game in its last two seasons. However, Cleveland also has a penchant for playing up to premium competition even if they come up on the losing end. Against Pittsburgh, Cleveland was able to score 18 points in a three-point loss against their AFC North rivals. While it may have been classed as a loss statistically for the Dogs, on a emotional level it will be a win. In two consecutive occasions, a field goal had to decide the outcome of a contest between Pittsburgh and Cleveland. Cleveland has also been on the bitter end of two overtime defeats in 2017.

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Baltimore has covered four in a row against the Browns. Previous to their loss against Pittsburgh, the Ravens had lost just one game in their previous five outings. The one less came against Tennessee in the Music City by virtue of a field goal. The stock is high on this outfit as a playoff contender given how their schedule shapes down the backstretch. To the eyes of many pundits and analysts, Baltimore should run away with this one given the proficient play of their defense alone. Without question, Baltimores typically rugged defense has been a difference maker for this club in 2017. The Ravens defense owns three shutouts in 2017. However, questions must be raised as to whether or not Pittsburgh exposed this unit in Sunday Nights shootout. If so, the Browns have a blueprint to utilize and potentially earn their first win this season.

Playing chalk has many disadvantages, especially when it is on the road in a hostile environment such as Cleveland. This game by no means will be a walk in the park for the Ravens. What really strikes out at us is the opening number in this market of 7.5. It was the exact number that the previous contest opened at in Week One. However, the consensus seems to like Baltimore this time around as opposed to Cleveland in the last episode. We would remiss to think the market offering would be identical as a mistake, especially given the fact the consensus loves the victor from last time. Chances are the line is bait and Cleveland is not only in position to cover here but perhaps do the unthinkable and submarine Baltimores playoff hopes whilst doing so. In this occasion, we recommend taking the points.

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