Kansas City Chiefs surprised most last week with a win over the Chargers, can they repeat or will the Browns step up?

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NFL Betting Line

Jake Delhomme for the Browns
  • Cleveland -1,-125 / 38 1/2

Line provided by the Greek

This line is working its way to 2 and possibly 2 1/2 as there is growing expectations that the Browns will play better than they did last week against Tampa Bay and that KC will have a letdown after their big win against the Chargers.

That may be all true, but betting against the public is something I have studied and quantified over my 17-year handicapping career and is not the best way of making money. BoDog has not posted a line attributed to the uncertain status of Browns starting quarterback Jake Delhomme.

Be sure to check out all of the betting lines at the SBR Odds.

KC defensive coordinator Crennel returns to Cleveland for the first time since being fired in 2008. The media always makes more out of this then is warranted. Crennel and his staff are the type of coaches that will focus everyone on a 'one play, one quarter, one half, one game at a time' philosophy.

This will minimize any letdowns from last week's huge win. The KC secondary was vastly better than advertised and their defensive scheme will force the Browns to throw the ball. The Browns are certainly not as strong an offensive unit as the Chargers so KC will be able to bring different looks and use the safety to stop the running game.

Cleveland will try to execute a more balanced offensive attack this week. Yet, they will need to throw the ball deep or spread the field with three and four wide receiver sets. Their biggest problem with that strategy is that they cannot afford to get into second or third and long situations.

Running back Jerome Harrison averaged six yards per carry with most of that coming in the first half last week. The KC defensive front did a great job of preventing the Charger offensive linemen from getting to the second levels. The key matchup here is KC inside linebacker Derrick Johnson spying on Harrison.

Kansas City remembers all to well that Harrison torched them for 286 rushing yards, ranking third most in NFL history, last year and that is simply not going to happen again. Johnson is one of the most athletic and quickest linebackers in the NFL and those assets match up extremely well against a running back like Harrison, who likes to shoot through seams. The winner of this NFL matchup will determine in large part who wins this game.

Browns quarterback Jake Delhomme has a sprained ankle and was seen at practice Wednesday wearing a boot. Seneca Wallace will be starting if Delhomme cannot due to the injury. They are different style quarterbacks, but neither will present a game plan problem for KC. Crennel will want either QB to be contained in the pocket and allow his secondary to make plays.

Delhomme will not be a threat to run and KC can use their defensive ends for containment if Wallace tries to make a play with his legs. Delhomme loves play action pass, but that is not going to be effective either against KC this week. KC lacks a bona fide pass rusher and their entire goal will be to make either QB make plays in the vertical passing game.

If you like Cleveland then check out this supporting system that has produced a record of 44-16 ATS for 73.3% winners since 1983. Play against home teams where the line is +3 to -3 off a road loss and a team that had a losing record last season. The 'under' may be a valid pro football betting opportunity as well and is supported by a system that has produced a 34-13 record for 72.3% winners since 2000. Play 'under' with any team against the total in conference games in the first two weeks of the year and was a non-playoff team from last season, who won their last two games of the season. Letdown is in the cards for KC as they are just 5-15 ATS (-11.5 Units) in road games after leading in their previous game by 14 or more points at the half since 1992.