NFL Week 17 Predictions: Jacksonville Jaguars vs Cleveland Browns

NFL Week 17 Predictions: Jacksonville Jaguars vs Cleveland Browns: With the Jaguars still in the playoff hunt (though their shot is longer than that pass Mike Vick threw in that Gatorade commercial before “the incident”) and a meager Cleveland Browns team between them and a shot at a possible post-season appearance, I just can’t see them blowing it again. I know it’s kind of their bag, but at some point it has to change, and while I don’t expect a win to actually get them into the show, losing to the Browns in what is essentially an elimination game for the Jags seems too much like Jacksonville for it actually to happen. That’s probably not a good enough reason, but it’s something.

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Then you have Jacksonville being just flat out better than Cleveland. And any team can play well for a few weeks, shoot, even the Bucs are on the verge of a three game winning streak, but that doesn’t make them a good team. The same can be said for Cleveland, obviously they’ve been bad all year for a reason, and that reason is that they are bad. The Jaguars will put 9 guys in the box if they have to, and Derek Anderson hasn’t, in the last couple years, shown me that he can hit a barn from the hay stack. Advantage Jacksonville.

Then you have this guy named Maurice Jones Drew, one of the best players in football, and a guy that absolutely wants the game resting on his back. Well, despite failing to involve him enough all season long, the Jaguars have no choice but to feed him 30 touches in this game. And without an elite pass-rush, or even a solid one, the Browns will give up too many chunks of yards to Garrard in the passing game. Those things add right up to a Jaguars win in Cleveland. In fact, I don’t know how this game has the line it has.

Jacksonville Jaguars (+3) @ Cleveland Browns.

Oakland Raiders vs Cleveland Browns: Expert NFL Picks

Oakland Raiders vs Cleveland Browns Expert NFL Picks: What the Browns have been doing lately depends very little on quarterback play, and even if it did, Brady Quinn wasn’t showing flashes of Bernie Kosar or anything crazy like that, so Derek Anderson should be able to step in and do a terrible job. In fact, this game is guaranteed to have some amazingly poor quarterbacking play. A couple throws and decisions made will surely perform like pepper spray in the casual on-watcher’s eye, so much so that I can’t wait to catch a glimpse. That’s right, I’ll have this game recorded for my complete viewing pleasure. Anytime I get sad football is over come this off-season, I’ll play the first few minutes of this game and feel better instantly!

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All jokes aside, I think the Browns are a decent bet here. They’ve played pretty solid football (sounds gross, I know) over the last 6 weeks or so. Maybe not solid, but there’s been something good coming from their team in all 6 of their last 6 games. Against Baltimore, their defense was stout. Against Detroit, their offense came alive. They lost by just 9 to Cincinnati in another tough defensive battle. They lost by a touchdown to one of the best teams in football (San Diego). They beat Pittsburgh straight up, and made it two in a row by laying 41 points on Kansas City in a game where their rushing attack (mainly James Harrison) torched the Chiefs for 300+ yards and a 41-34 score on the road.

Oakland has a better defense, but just barely. I’m not sure what I would have conceded first, teh Raiders winning two straight or Cleveland winning 3 in a row. But it looks like the answer’s Cleveland for me this week. At home, a solid run game, I’ll take them.

Oakland Raiders @ Cleveland Browns (-2.5)

Cleveland Browns vs Kansas City Chiefs: NFL Week 15 Picks

Cleveland Browns vs Kansas City Chiefs: NFL Week 15 Picks: Believe it or not, I think the Browns have some positive vibes going through the organization right now. There’s a pretty good chance a proven winner is going to take over the football operations of a Cleveland team that hasn’t seen the playoffs since the Browns turned into the Ravens.But this team has been pretty competitive over the last 4 games, even going as far as beating the Steelers last week on Thursday Night Football. They’ve had three extra days to prepare for one of the bottom dwellers in football. I think they have an amazing chance to win 2 games in a row, something I didn’t think I’d be saying this season. They’ve already covered 4 straight games, and they’ve scored more points over the last 4 games than the scored the first 8 games of the season combined. Like it or not, the Browns are hot – for Browns anyway.

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The Chiefs, on the other hand, have been playing their worst football of the year. After being competitive for the early stretch, and going as far as winning 2 straight and covering three straight, the Chiefs have been outscored 103-37 over the last 3 games. Kansas City is just 1-5 at home this season, one of their worst home performances that I can remember. While their running game has being going well, Matt Cassel has been a turnover machine, and his inability to move the ball down field has hurt the Chiefs all year long.

I like the Browns to keep doing what they’ve been doing, playing well defensively and getting enough from Brady Quinn and their young receivers.

Cleveland Browns (+2) @ Kansas City Chiefs:

Pittsburgh Steelers vs Cleveland Browns Free Football Picks

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Pittsburgh Steelers vs Cleveland Browns Free Football Picks: This Thursday Night game sure doesn’t have much intrigue. Like I said earlier this year, the NFL doesn’t do a very good job of setting up excitement for their Thursday games. Pittsburgh is the defending Champ, but they sure have played like the Cleveland Browns lately. You’d think they’d be looking pretty after starting off hot and playing the Chiefs and Raiders in a three week period, but no, the Steelers have lost four straight, including losses to those two AFC West powerhouses. The Browns, well, they’ve collected losses really well thus far.

Cleveland is 11-1 on the season, I take that back, sorry, they are 1-11 thus far, tied for the worst record in the league, and the only hope they have is that Pittsburgh is trying for the hideous trifecta. I’m pretty sure the NFL stops when the Steelers lose to the Raiders, Chiefs, and Browns in a single year. You can bet I’ll be rooting for such an even to take place, just the sheer amazement I would have on my face might be worth it.

But I’m taking Pittsburgh, because I don’t think the Steelers can piss another game away. I don’t think they have a bad enough team to lose 5 straight games, even if injuries are making life tough on them. The Browns aren’t a good football team, they have a brand new coach that has a good chance of being somewhere else next year. They have a young quarterback that has been playing pretty well, but I only think that ends up working against them. Defensively they will have trouble with Big Ben and company. Ben put up 400+ against them last time out. I think a rare Pittsburgh double digit win is in the cards.

Pittsburgh Steelers (-10) @ Cleveland Browns

San Diego Chargers vs Cleveland Browns Preview and Pick

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San Diego Chargers vs Cleveland Browns Preview and Pick: I’ve never liked the Chargers as big favorites, even less so on the road, but one offensive outburst doesn’t a season make, and that’s where 99% of the Browns offense came from, one single offensive performance in once magic passing game (which they lost on the last play anyway) against a pathetic Detroit Lions secondary. And without any offensive burst, there’s no way the Browns stay within 14 points of Philip Rivers and that offense.

Unlike the Cincinnati Bengals, the Chargers don’t care about slowing the game down and getting a sure win, no, they like to throw the ball and jam touchdowns like your throat like force-feeding somebody almonds without giving them a drink of water (I use that example because I once force-fed my cousin almonds and he didn’t like it one bit). Vincent Jackson hasn’t had a huge day in a while, and there’s no better time than now. I’m sure Philip Rivers is watching tape of the Lions game and going, “Matthew Stafford threw 5 touchdowns against these guys, I’m going to throw 6….” He’s a competitive guy like that, and I must say, I like his chances.

The Browns lost Jamal Lewis for the season (and his career coincidentally) and so their offense takes a little bit of a hit. That’s right, if an offense is the worst in the league, and they take an injury hit, what does that make them? A nice play against, even as a big dog at home, that’s what.

San Diego Chargers (-12) @ Cleveland Browns

Cleveland Browns vs Cincinnati Bengals Pick & Preview

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Cleveland Browns (+14.5) @ Cincinnati Bengals Pick & Preview: The Cleveland Browns aren’t good. Don’t be tricked by their performance last week against the Lions – their offense isn’t any good either. I’m pretty sure they passed for more touchdowns in that one game against Detroit than they had all season – let me check the stats…. Yep, I was right, Brady Quinn had 4 last time out. He had 1 prior to the game against the Lions. And while completing just 62% of his passes, Derek Anderson had found a receiver in the end-zone two times. So that’s 4 last week and 3 all season – like I said, their offense is just plain bad.

The Browns are bad, sure, but 14+ points worse than a team that has exactly one win by 10 points or more all season long? I like the Bengals, their defense is stout, their offense is smart, and they should be red-hot and fiery after blowing an easy win last week in a league where easy wins rarely present themselves. But this is still a division game, and the Bengals have to beat the Browns to sweep the division for the first time ever. So they’ll be thinking about something.

They are also smart (usually) and spend a lot of time just making sure they win. They play in a lot of low-scoring games, and they do the smart thing almost every time out. The odds just don’t point to the Bengals winning by more than 2 touchdowns – I’ll take the Browns (gross) and all those points (just enough for me)

Cleveland Browns vs Detroit Lions Free NFL Pick

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Cleveland Browns @ Detroit Lions (-2.5) Free NFL Pick: It’s hard to think of much to say about this game, but as far as wordy bastards go, I’m pretty much right up there, so you know I’ll give it my best shot.

These teams suck. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a more terrible offense than the thing Cleveland puts out there on a weekly basis, but Detroit’s overall consistently terrible play all over the field makes them hard to watch as well. The fact that Detroit can actually put offensive touchdowns on the score board make them a sexy pick here, especially when you consider that most of Cleveland’s total yards come from a guy that might not play because of an injury on Monday Night’s last second play. Joshua Cribbs is questionable for Sunday’s game.

When you add everything up, the poo and the spit and the tears and the questionable decisions, the rosters, the firings, and all of the disappointment and questions surrounding the Cleveland Browns organization over the last, well, since they became the Browns again anyway, I just don’t see how there’s any other pick in this one besides the Lions.

Detroit is no sure thing, don’t get it twisted, but they have an offense with some solid play makers, they have a quarterback that can stretch the defense, and a receiver that is one of the very best in the NFL. They don’t do much defensively, but I’m not sure they’ll have to. Give me the Lions in a game too ugly for even me to watch. And that’s saying something.

Baltimore Ravens vs Cleveland Browns Free NFL Pick

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Baltimore Ravens (-10.5) @ Cleveland Browns Free NFL Pick: Right now, at some of the different books I pay attention to, you can get this game anywhere from 10.5 to 12 points. The spread is definitely wide, but always big and giving the Browns plenty of chances to cover. 71% of the public likes Baltimore, a number that often stings the public while making the books mo money, mo money, mo money! But I think this time will be different.

During the Browns 7 losses this season, they’ve lost by less than 13 points just once, an overtime loss to a good Bengals team. The Browns have scored fewer than 7 points 5 times this season. They’ve scored one offensive touchdown or less in 7 of their 8 games. That’s absurd, but absolutely true. Sometimes things are unbelievable even though you can see them with your own eyes. Like the name Ochocinco on the back of a dude’s jersey. Like the Oakland Raiders. Like a dude in Cleveland completing just 2 of 17 passes… And winning! The Browns scoring 1 offensive touchdown or less in 7 of 8 games is one of those things. Mangini’s not even angry, he’s amazed, an entire cheese log…

As if being unbelievably bad offensively wasn’t bad enough, the Browns give up 170.5 rushing yards per game, that’s 31st in the NFL, right behind the Buffalo Bills. But at least the Bills are a Top 10 pass defense (actually 11, but you get the picture) – the Browns rank 22nd in pass defense as well. Not only do they give up yards, but they have almost no takeaways either. Only the Chiefs have fewer interceptions. This team is bad, and last time the Ravens played them, the Browns were exposed for exactly what they are. A team with no offense, no defense, and a clown in a man suit acting as head coach. Dreamy situation. Yeah, I’ll take Baltimore.

Cleveland Browns vs Chicago Bears Pick & Preview

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Cleveland Browns (+14) @ Chicago Bears Pick and Preview: I know, big dogs have been suicide all season long, and this very well might be another one of those, lord knows the Browns have it in them – but at the very least, Cleveland has been a defense that forces opposing quarterbacks into bad throws, and if you don’t think Jay Cutler is prone to interceptions than you have been smoking the good stuff. The Browns can, at least, run the football. They have a powerful offensive line, a very underrated unit, and a couple running backs that can get 4 yards a pop. The Bears can be run on, they are beat up in the front 7, they need to commit to helping in the secondary (because they struggle there) and the bottom line is there’s space to run in Chicago. Sure, the Browns have a brutal run defense, sure, they’ve gotten blown out a few times this year, but I think they can stick with the Bears. Chicago will have to show me one heck of a lot more before I take them as a two touchdown favorite this season. They make mistakes on offense, they allow big plays on defense, and they are prone to quick offensive series – that won’t take advantage of Cleveland’s biggest weakness. Always tough to take the Brownies, but the value is with them on the road.

Green Bay Packers vs Cleveland Browns Free NFL Pick

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Green Bay Packers (-6.5) @ Cleveland Browns: Lots of stuff has me thinking this is a great bet. There’s the Flu that’s going around Cleveland like flies swarm cow poo, there’s the fact that Cleveland’s quarterback has a 44% completion rate on the season, or that Green Bay has played much better defensively over the past three games – many, many things say Packers. But 81% of the public likes this bet, and that’s a red flag if I’ve ever seen one. One thing Cleveland does better than Green Bay is control the ball, their time of possession is solid despite the inability to complete passes and being prone to turnovers. Big spreads for road favorites can often backfire with a pass happy team struggling to complete passes. But I see the Packers running the ball more this Sunday, holding the ball longer, and covering by at least a touchdown in Cleveland. Vegas or the people? Who wins this Sunday? Damn the man!