Week 3 Staff Best Bets: Thursday Night Football – Browns vs. Steelers

Our NFL experts provide picks for tonight's game.
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Many of our ScoresAndOdds NFL experts will bring you free betting picks each week for the prime time Thursday Night Football game!

We had a highly anticipated matchup between the Chargers and Chiefs last Thursday. Vegas doesn’t think this week’s TNF matchup will offer as much firepower, as the Browns vs. Steelers currently own a game total of 38.5 on most sportsbooks.

Let’s check out some best bets from our SAO staff for Thursday’s AFC North battle.

Thursday Night Football – Week 3: Free Browns vs. Steelers Betting Picks

Game Total Under 38.5 points (Multiple Sportsbooks)

This rivalry is tight and a toss up when it comes to the spread, so I’ll place a bet against the 2 starting quarterbacks that have shown me very little in their careers and almost nothing this year. Poor offensive-line play for the Steelers is crushing the offense and a conservative quarterback with poor arm talent is hindering the Browns’ offense. Give me the under and hope we can keep the non-offensive touchdowns off the board this game.

Pittsburgh To Record More Passing Yards (-135 on FanDuel)

I don’t expect this Pittsburgh offense to have a lot of success on the ground against this Cleveland defense, especially since Najee Harris already looks like a shell of the runner he was last season. I also expect Cleveland to play with the lead in this game, and we know the Browns will use their two running backs to control the clock if that happens. In a neutral game script, I would still figure Pittsburgh to have more passing volume than Cleveland here. The only risk is if the Steelers get out to a decent lead, and I don’t see that happening, in what should be a low scoring affair.

Cleveland Browns – 4.5 (Multiple Sportsbooks)

I’m still having nightmares about the Jets comeback against the Browns in Week 2, but that’s the definition of an outlier. If they go on to win that game, many would see tonight’s game against the Steelers differently. Pittsburgh has one of the worst offensive lines in football, they have a struggling veteran quarterback that has bounced around the league, and they are missing their best player on the defensive side of the football. The Browns should have the advantage in the trenches on both sides of the ball. If they can build a lead, their defense should be able to learn from their mistakes last Sunday.

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Harrison Bryant Over 13.5 Receiving Yards (BetMGM)

Bryant has been a pleasant, consistent surprise in this Browns’ offense. He has played nearly 50% of snaps in both games, while receiving four targets in each game, good for third on the team’s pecking order in target market share. It’s going to be a very ugly weather game tonight and I can see many short passes thrown in his direction. Bryant has covered this number in both games and I think he is trending in the right direction to make it three-in-a-row.

Jacoby Brissett Under 17.5 Completions (-125, FanDuel)

Brissett completed 18 passes in Week 1 in a game that featured 26 points from the Cleveland offense and 50 points total in the game. He followed it up with 22 completions in Week 2 as the Cleveland offense put up 30 points in a game that finished with 61 total points. This week the over/under with Pittsburgh coming to town is just 38.5 total points, with the Browns implied for roughly 21.5 points as 3.5-point favorites. The Browns should play with the lead in this one, and are likely content to lean on their two talented running backs rather than let Brissett try to move the chains through the air. I think we see more defense and punts than offense in this game, and Brissett finishes with less than 17.5 completions.