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)
Cleveland may actually be catching a break this week as they are facing the 49ers off their Bye Week. I know that extra time to prepare is usually a good thing but the last thing you want to do is take a break when you are on a roll.The 49ers went into the break having won 4 in a row so the Bye Week will have broken their momentum. It must also be noted that teams in general this year have performed poorly off the Bye week. Looking deeper at the Browns you will see that defense really has played well the last two weeks. Last week was a given as they held Seattle to just 3 points. Looking back 2 weeks ago when they lost to Oakland 24-17 the defense really only gave up 10 points. Oakland scored one Touchdown on a 100 yd Kick return and one Touchdown on a fake FG. San Francisco has scored less than 24 points in every game but 2 and one of those 2 were because they had 2 kick returns. Cleveland keeps this close on Sunday. I have San Francisco Winning by only 3.
Vegas Runner (Follow on twitter: @VegasRunner)
Prior to the season kicking off the betting line being offered for the Week 8 match-up was San Francisco -3. This week the books offered the 49ers at -8.5 and were forced to adjust as high as -9.5 after taking some money on the favorite. Since then the wiseguys have come back to steam the Browns and the line currently sits at 8.5, back to where it opened on Sunday night. The Niners are a surprise this season having gone 5-1 straight up and not losing a single game against the spread. So far they have an ATS margin of +82 (highest in the NFL) and the Browns are -31.5. Historically teams finish the season with an average ATS margin of +/-6 so a regression from San Francisco and a progression from Cleveland should be expected. The 49ers have only been favored in two games this season and the Browns have only opened as an underdog once prior to this week's game. So far the "bye" has not helped teams and the reason for that seems to be the new collective bargaining agreement which forces teams to take 5 days off during the break. That has negated momentum and as hot as the 49ers were prior, the timing couldn't have been worse. The Browns are #3 in pass defense (yards allowed) and I expect them to stack the box to slow down Frank Gore and try to force Alex Smith to beat them. Oddsmakers definitely expected the betting public to come in heavy on San Fran and tried to protect the books by sending out an inflated price. Personally, I believe the Browns offer a lot of betting value this week and I also expect this game to go OVER 38.5. PICK = BROWNS +8.5.
Bryan Leonard (Follow on twitter: @BLeonardSports)
The line looks a bit inflated here considering the total sits in the 38 1/2 range. Granted the Cleveland offense did next to nothing last game in a 6-3 win over Seattle, but San Francisco themselves lacks a big scoring punch. Cleveland is getting some key components back this week while the 49ers enter off a bye. Keep in mind that San Francisco hasn't posted a winning record since 2002 so the four game winning streak heading into the week off may keep them from being focused here. The 49ers have three straight conference games on deck vs Washington, the Giants and Arizona, so they have more important games on deck. Catching more than 7 points puts us on a solid lean towards the Browns.
Joe Gavazzi (visit at www.JoeGavazzi.com)
In this game, we pay the price to back the Niners momentum. They stand 5-0-1 ATS for the season covering by 79 points. Cleveland, conversely, is on a 2-11 ATS slide failing by a net of 28 points this season. The 6-3 home victory last week was a microcosm of their offensive season. They now average just 4.4 YPPL, near the bottom of the league and well below the league average of 5.7 YPPL. San Francisco HC Harbaugh has miraculously transformed this team. At 11.0, they have the best offensive YPPT in the league indicating amazing efficiency. They are outrushing their foes 132/4.5 to 75/3.6. The plus 8 net turnover margin is among the best in the league. Whatever Harbaugh is doing has brought a whole new attitude of success to this team. QB Smith is 10-1-1 ATS on this field in his starts.