Thursday Night GreenZone - NYJ at CLE
[6.6 Units] New York Jets (+3) at Cleveland Browns
6.6 Units – NYJ +3.5 or more
4.4 Units – NYJ +3
No Action – NYJ +2.5 or less
The day has finally come…the Browns are going to do it…crack open those Bud Light coolers and let’s rage in the streets. That is the consensus opinion among fans, media personalities, and bettors alike. Because of the home field advantage and the short travel week, we do see the Browns as winners in this game, but by the slimmest of margins. The Las Vegas Super Contest line as of Wednesday night was Cleveland -3, but a lot of books today are starting to drift into the 3.5-point territory. We recommend 6.6 units at +3.5 and 4.4 units at +3.
The Browns have played two very competitive games and one may argue that they could be 2-0. That is true, but they also probably should have lost their Week 1 game by about 14 points and the Saints have been notorious slow starters, starting the last 5 seasons at 0-2. That being said, the Browns are definitely a much improved team vs. their winless 2017 campaign. They are young on both sides of the ball, but the defense appears to have developed some consistency, and with the leadership of Tyrod Taylor they are at least not killing their chances of winning on offense now. The departure of Josh Gordon may be a slight addition by subtraction for them, as the elimination of the distraction outweighs the very limited production he has had over the last three years. Their skill guys are solid and Tyrod has a history of being steady, but the problem with this Browns offense realizing their potential is up front. Tyrod has looked like a poor man’s version of his previous self with very little time in the pocket speeding him up and taking a physical toll. That will likely continue to be a problem tonight against a very fast Jets defense.
The good, young, defense of the Browns is matched and in our opinion, exceeded, by the Jets D. They can fly around and have a very talented young core of very high draft picks who appear to be putting it together. We think the relative success they’ve had early in the season translates well for this matchup. Additionally, the 2018 on-field observed performance by our models has the Jets better in all three major facets of the game: offense, defense, and special teams. The Jets have excelled on special teams this year, but we do acknowledge it’s been a very small sample size. Conversely, special teams alone cost the Browns the W last week in New Orleans. We have this as a very even matchup, basically right at a pick ‘em, and for that reason, we must take the value. In what should be a close game, 3 points are all the value we need. The one caveat we are slightly worried about is the short travel week, but if you can get the hook at +3.5, it’s a full on GreenZone guy to get the week started.