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2018 NFL Week 12: Cleveland Browns @ Cincinnati Bengals

- Photo credit: David Kohl, USA TODAY Sports


Cleveland Browns @ Cincinnati Bengals u46.5 (-105)

Historically, backing the UNDER has been highly profitable in situations where teams from the same division face-off in open-air contests featuring average-to-high totals (46.5/47 is the median/average closing betting total through the first 11 weeks of the current NFL season, per AccuScore's database). Betting on disappointing scores from n this spot has covered 57% of the time since 2003.

Mother Nature too, will likely have a hand in depressing the offensive output mustered collectively by the Browns and the Bengals Sunday, as reports a forecast for 10 mph winds at Paul Brown Stadium over the course of the action.

High winds tend to restrain the passing game, which, by extension, generally limits big play potential. If we can assume the ground game rather than the aerial attack will be in focus Sunday, given that Cincy and Cleveland rank 16th and 21st running the football by DVOA , it also stands to reason that scores should be subdued relative to expectations.

Supporting this hypothesis, per BetLabsSports' database, the UNDER has indeed been a winning play since 2003 in games with wind speeds that reach 10-12 mph (the upper end of the "gentle breeze" range, as defined by the Beaufort wind speed scale.

Thus, as far as we can tell, conditions appear ripe for the UNDER to cash in in Ohio Sunday; we are wagering accordingly.

We note though that the secret is out, so inclined bettors might want to jump on sooner than later. As of the time of this writing, 65% of total wagers and 87% of dollars bet on the O/U line are down on the UNDER. As a result, the number has dropped from the opening level of 48, through the historically key 47 level, to the current 46.5 (see the chart below to get a sense of which totals have been most relevant in the past).

(Note that the longer PAT rule, in effect since 2015, has skewed the most recent totals data.)

Happy betting!!

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