There are a number of divisional rivalry games on the Week 8 NFL betting slate. Among them is this AFC North battle between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cleveland Browns. It’s no secret that these two teams and their fanbases absolutely despise one another. Add in the critical role that the outcome of Sunday’s game could have in the playoff picture going forward and tensions figure to be running high. The NFL betting odds list the home team as a short favorite ahead of this Steelers vs Browns rivalry game.
Steelers vs Browns Week 8 NFL Betting Preview
NFL Regular Season — Week 8 Game
Pittsburgh Steelers (3-3, 1-1 Away) vs. Cleveland Browns (4-3, 3-1 Home)
Date: Sunday, Oct. 31, 2021
Time: 1 p.m. EST
Venue: FirstEnergy Stadium — Cleveland, OH
Coverage: Click here for the stream
Pittsburgh Steelers Preview
The Steelers do enter this AFC North showdown with a rest advantage, albeit a small one. While Pittsburgh had a bye last week, the Browns actually come in with three extra days off after playing on Thursday night in Week 7. When we last saw Mike Tomlin’s Steelers in action, they were taken to overtime by the Seattle Seahawks and backup QB, Geno Smith. That performance turned many NFL betting analysts off of Pittsburgh moving forward. Nonetheless, this is still a capable outfit. Ben Roethlisberger may not be the same quarterback he once was, but he has proven to still be serviceable in leading the Steelers to two straight wins before the bye. Najee Harris completed his 81 rushing yards against Seattle with six receptions for another 46 yards and a score.
After losing JuJu Smith-Schuster for the season, the onus will again be on Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool to be the top options at wideout this week. The Browns’ defensive secondary is certainly one that can be beaten. The question is whether Roethlisberger has the arm to do it? Expect the Steelers’ defense to hold up its end of the bargain in this NFL betting matchup. Pittsburgh enters the week with a top-10 adjusted efficiency ranking, per Football Outsiders. T.J. Watt made his presence felt in the win over Seattle two weeks ago by recording a pair of sacks.
Cleveland Browns Preview
Many NFL betting analysts were down on the Browns heading into their Thursday night game last week against the Denver Broncos. Yet, Cleveland managed to prevail in a low-scoring affair despite being without QB Baker Mayfield and their top two running backs, Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Of that trio, only Hunt will remain out for this Week 8 clash against the Steelers. Whether or not Mayfield will be at full strength and capability as he plays through a shoulder injury remains to be seen. The Browns will certainly be excited to welcome Chubb back. Expect the offense to lean on the run game as much as possible with D’Ernest Johnson serving as the change-of-pace back following his impressive showing last week.
Star pass-rushers Myles Garrett and Jadeveon Clowney are undoubtedly licking their chops ahead of this divisional battle. The two combined for a pair of sacks last week and figure to have an advantage over a very suspect Steelers offensive line. The key for the Browns will be whether or not the secondary can hold up. Cleveland has been very strong defensively against the run but is just 23rd in adjusted efficiency against the pass coming in. That said, if the pass rush can get home, the pressure on the secondary will certainly be lessened.
Steelers vs Browns Odds and Spread
Moneyline: PIT: (+140) | CLE: (-175)
Spread: PIT: +3.5 (-110) | CLE: -3.5 (-110)
Total: 42 — Over: (-110) | Under: (-110)
Public (Spread) Betting via Action Network: PIT: (46%) | CLE: (54%)
Steelers vs Browns NFL Betting Trends
- Steelers are just 1-4 ATS in their last five games.
- Four of the Steelers’ last six games have gone under the total.
- Browns are 6-3 ATS in their last nine games.
- Browns are 0-6 ATS in their last six Week 8 games.
- Six of the last eight Steelers vs Browns head-to-head matchups played in Cleveland have gone under the total.
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Steelers vs Browns Stats
– Pittsburgh is averaging 19.5 points per game (PPG) this season (No. 26 in the NFL).
– Pittsburgh is surrendering 22.0 PPG this season (No. 12 in the NFL).
– Cleveland is averaging 24.7 PPG this season (T-No. 12 in the NFL).
– Cleveland is surrendering 23.6 PPG this season (No. 18 in the NFL).
Steelers vs Browns Prediction
The Steelers vs Browns NFL betting prediction uses the ESPN Football Power Index.
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