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  • Writer's picture@WizeOwlSports

2019 NFL Week 10: Buffalo Bills @ Cleveland Browns

Buffalo Bills +3 @ Cleveland Browns


In a game only a bettor could love, the League's 25th and 26th ranked offenses will square off in Cleveland Sunday morning. Our power rankings work makes the hosting Browns about a point of two better than the Bills. Accordingly, we are jumping on the road team plus the key three points.

Fundamentally, the biggest disparity between these teams (on paper, anyway) relates to Cleveland's inability to move the ball through the air. By Football Outsider's DVOA, the Browns are expected to be about 14% worse than average throwing the ball against the Bills. This cynical outlook owes to the combination of Buffalo's fifth-ranked pass defense and Cleveland's #30 aerial attack (see here for a discussion of the issues plaguing Cleveland's second-year QB, Baker Mayfield).

Further, while the Bills rank 30th defending the rush, Cleveland's ground attack is also sub-par, largely mitigating this potential edge.

Perusing history, we identified a couple of reliable systems that validate our play on Buffalo. For one, the simple approach of betting against home teams to cover after four game losing streaks has been solidly profitable.

Further, teams off straight-up wins and that won three of their last four games have also been solid bets ATS, delivering better than a 60% ATS win rate over the life of the data at our disposal.

Bottom line: The obvious knock on Buffalo is that their schedule was exceptionally light en route to the BIlls' 6-2 SU season-to-date record. Conversely, the Browns 2-6 record might be somewhat justified by their suffering through one of the toughest schedules of the season. However, even after adjusting for strength of opposition, we see nothing to suggest the hapless Browns deserve to be slated at three-point favorites this afternoon (Cleveland is 1-3 ATS laying chalk this year). History appears aligned with our thinking.

Happy betting!

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