Cleveland Browns at Oakland Raiders: What The Wiseguys Think

I asked the guys over at Pregame.com to give me their thoughts.  Pregame.com is the largest sports betting news site compliant with U.S. law, and have been featured by ESPN, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and hundreds of other national outlets. Pregame.com has agreed to provide us with exclusive insider analysis of how Las Vegas is looking at this week's Browns game


Marco D'Angelo (Follow on twitter: @MarcoInVegas)
The Oakland Raiders return home off a very emotional win in Houston last Sunday. The game was played the day after Raider Owner Al Davis passed away. The Raiders rose to the occasion and came up with a big win. This week they face a Cleveland Brown team who is looking to bounce back from a very poor showing against Tennessee, a game in which they lost 31-13. Cleveland has had plenty of time to think about that clunker as they were on a Bye Week last week. Teams who played poorly going into the Bye will generally play well with that extra week to prepare. From a handicapping stand point the Raiders has been a pointspread darling going 4-1 ATS but they were Underdogs in all 5 games. This Sunday Oakland will have the burden of laying points, 7 to be exact. When this line opened up it was Oakland -7 and the first move was to -6.5, which tells me the sharps like the dog. I agree Cleveland should make a game of this and has a very good chance of winning this game outright. This line has worked it's way back to 7 as the public has started to get involved and they will be betting Oakland. Some may think Oakland will be pumped again this week playing first Home game since Al Davis passed away but fact is last week's winning performance was done on adrenaline this week they won't be able to match that level of emotion. I like Cleveland to pull off the Upset and Win this 23-20.


Vegas Runner (Follow on twitter: @VegasRunner)
There is absolutely NO doubt which side the sports books will need in the Raiders vs Browns match-up...and that's the Browns. In fact, the Raiders are expected to be one of the most one-sided bet teams on Sunday and will attract a ton of money in the form of exotics (parlays/teasers). With the beating put on the books by recreational bettors over the last few weeks in the NFL, it's obvious that oddsmakers have attempted to protect them in Week 6 by inflating a lot of the lines. They were well aware that Oakland would be getting a lot of action and this is definitely one of those inflated prices. So it's no surprise that sharp bettors grabbed the +7 with Cleveland when this line went up and forced most books to drop it down to 6.5. Even with that steam on the Browns from the sharps, it won't be enough to offset the public money and this line should climb back up to 7 as we approach kick-off.

The Raiders are coming off a very emotional win against the Texans and after the Browns, they have 3 straight divisional games on deck so they may get caught looking ahead. For the Browns it's simple, win the turn-over battle and they will have a shot to pull the upset or at least cover the spread. In their 2 wins this season Cleveland is +2 in turn-overs and in their 2 losses they are -1. Finally, the Browns are coming off a bye and for the FIRST time all season they are offered as an under-dog. That's correct, the Browns have opened as the betting FAVORITE for every game thus far. Personally I believe the value is on the Browns and for me it's grab the points or leave the game alone.

Bryan Leonard (@BLeonardSports)
This game has bounced around from 7 down to 5 and now back up to 6 1/2. The Browns are off an embarrassing home loss to Tennessee and in the week prior they came back against the Dolphins for a 17-16 win. So we find a team that has been struggling, but they did have last week off so it couldn't have come at a better time. Cleveland has key players on both lines as well as a play making running back either injured or in the doghouse. The Browns have been somewhat fortunate with a schedule of Cincinnati, Indianapolis, Miami and Tennessee, which has to be the easiest slate in the league. So while the schedule favors Cleveland the Browns look to be a team with severe problems.

Oakland is coming off a huge game after owner Al Davis passed away and the team rallied around their fallen leader. Traditionally you would think that this would be a letdown spot, but word out of Oakland is that there will be a huge gathering paying their last respects for Mr. Davis. In fact, it could very well be the most important home game the Raiders have had in years. Keep in mind this franchise hasn't had a winning record since 2002. So with the line at less than 7 points we are leaning to the Raiders based more on player emotion than scheduling situation.

Joe Gavazzi (visit at www.JoeGavazzi.com)
Cleveland has played among the easiest schedule in the league which is quite dichotomous to that faced by the Raiders.  More indicative of the Browns at this point than their 2-2 SU record is their recent mark of 2-10 ATS.  Only the rushing defense of Oakland, which allows 5.2 YPR gives promise to a Cleveland offense that is little better than the 16 PPG they have authored in the previous 3 seasons.  The question for Oakland is their mental approach to this game.  It's their first home appearance since the loss of Al Davis who was the face of the franchise for many years.  Combined with last week's upset of Houston, it could be a tough week for them to retain full focus.  Yet under first year HC Jackson, all indications are that this is an emerging team.  That is particularly true on the offensive end where they are rushing the ball on nearly 50% of their plays for 162/5.4, good for 42% of their total yards.  With a more efficient passing attack gaining a league average 7.0 OYPA, it makes them a clearly more efficient team than Cleveland.  If the Raiders can pass the emotional and mental hurdle they face this week, it would not be  surprising to see them emerge with a high scoring victory.    

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