Home Team Cover in Steelers vs. Browns Week 1 NFL

Joe Gavazzi

Friday, September 5, 2014 4:56 PM GMT

The Pittsburgh Steelers have owned the Cleveland Browns time and time again over the last decade. But will the road dogs upset the NFL Odds and win against the home team favorites? Find out as we deliver our NFL picks.  

The record in this rivalry favors Pittsburgh by a count of 19-2 SU, 14-7 ATS.  The previous 3 games in this series have seen an average Pittsburgh victory of more than 14 PPG.  The Browns were again inept last season, recording a 4-12 SU record. 

Looking for improvement, Cleveland will have a better ground game and defense.  Major problems are in the passing game, where Cleveland features a rookie HC Pettine, a continuing controversy at the signal caller spot (Hoyer will start over Manziel), and deficiencies in the receiving corps without Gordon. 

After starting 2013 0-8 SU ATS through Game 4 of the regular season, the Steelers were equally impotent this August with a 1-3 SU ATS mark.  That included losing their Game 3 dress rehearsal, 31-21, as well as their Game 4 finale, 10-0, on this field to Carolina.  Following consecutive 8-8 SU seasons, there is much to prove for the Men of Steel.  Addition of new OL Coach Munchak will result in the Steelers’ most cohesive OL in recent years.  Though the Steelers were again badly handled at the point of attack in August, I am confident this unit will lead an improved ground game for Pittsburgh.  Of further note, when choosing your NFL picks, is the return to speed on defense, as Pittsburgh gradually replaces their aging stop unit.

NFL Pick: Look for this highly motivated home team to continue their domination of a Cleveland team whom they have beaten 10 consecutive times on this field, covering NFL odds at -7.

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