Denver Broncos vs Cleveland Browns Prediction, Pick and Preview, October 21 (10/21): NFL Week 7
- Oct 19, 2021, 9:49:31 AM
Credit: photo by Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
|Time||8:20 p.m. EST|
|Broncos money line||+156|
|Browns money line||-164|
|Over / under||42.5|
2021 season stats
|Road / home record||2-1||2-1|
|Points per game||21.0||26.0|
|Points allowed per game||18.3||25.2|
|Pass yards per game||251||228|
|Rush yards per game||118||169|
|Total yards per game||389||415|
|Total yards allowed per game||315||308|
The Denver Broncos have completely cooled down from their 3-0 start to the season. They're now on a three-game losing streak as they head to Cleveland for another AFC matchup against the Browns. The Browns are dealing with some serious injury woes and need to bounce back to make sure they don't lose ground in the North. The Broncos haven't been living up to the performance of the first three weeks but should be confident in a road trip to a banged-up Cleveland Browns team.
The last time the Broncos and Browns met was in Week 9 of the 2019 season in Denver. The home team took that game 24-19 subjecting to Browns to a four-game losing streak.
Teddy Bridgewater put up his highest passing yards per game total of the season in Week 6 against the Raiders. He went 35 of 49 attempts for 334 yards and 3 passing TDs. He also threw 3 picks and had only an 84.9 passer rating for the game. The rookie Javonte Williams was the team's leading rusher outpacing Melvin Gordon. Williams had 53 yards off 11 rushes while Gordan has 10 rushes for 50 yards. Tight end Noah Fant had had his best game of the season leading the team in receiving yards with 97 and one score. Courtland Sutton had another big night with 94 yards of his own and one TD as well. Despite a rocky start, Sutton is now 10th in the league in receiving yards. Bridgewater and Fant were both limited in practice on Tuesday.
Cleveland had a very bad week against the Cardinals. They were blown out and lost some key players to injury. Kareem Hunt picked up a calf injury during the game and was almost immediately placed on IR at the end of the game. Baker Mayfield reaggravated a shoulder injury and showed up to the post-game press conference with a sling on the injured left shoulder. He still expects to play on Thursday but no official statement has been given regarding his readiness for the Thursday night matchup. Nick Chubb has already been ruled out for the game meaning third-year running back D'ernest Johnson will likely lead the backfield for Cleveland. Both Baker and OBJ were limited in practice on Tuesday.
Even on a three-game losing streak, Denver has managed to be a top-five defense in the league. They've only given up 18.3 points per game which rank 4th in the NFL. They're also only giving up 314.7 yards per game which ranks 4th in that category as well. Von Miller's team-best 4.5 sacks are 13th best in the league. Miller seems to have recovered from the injury which kept him out of the 2020 season. Linebacker Alexander Johnson who has 32 tackles on the season did not practice on Tuesday.
The Browns' injury woes continue on defense. Jadeveon Clowney was limited in Tuesday practice. This, after Linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah was placed on IR after the loss to the Cardinals. The Cleveland defense has given up 84 total points in the last two games after giving up 67 through the first four games. The league leader in sacks Myles Garrett has been dealing with some knee and ankle injuries but was a full participant in practice on Monday and Tuesday. He should be ready for Thursday night.
Injuries have already become a prominent factor in the 2021 season and the Browns and realizing that. Even with the injuries, they should have their starting QB under center to face a Denver team that started off red-hot with wins against two hapless NY franchises and a Jaguars franchise that was on the worst losing streaks in the NFL. Since then the Broncos lost to the Ravens, Steelers and Raiders. They don't seem particularly adept at being able to deal with teams boasting a stout defense. Even with the missing players at running back the Browns have enough talent on offense and defense to win in a short week.
PICK: Cleveland Browns spread (-3)
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