The Pittsburgh Steelers look to bounce back from their Week 1 home loss when they welcome the Cleveland Browns on Monday Night Football. The Steelers were taken to the woodshed by the San Francisco 49ers, 30-7, as their offense could not get anything going against the San Francisco defense and the normally ironclad Pittsburgh D got shredded by Brock Purdy. The Browns also started their 2023 campaign at home and delivered a 24-3 beating of the Cincinnati Bengals, using defense and a punishing running game to seize control of the rhythm. Don’t miss our sports betting preview of this AFC North showdown between NFL Browns vs Steelers.
Week 2: NFL Browns vs Steelers MNF Betting Odds | Bet NFL Football Lines by Xbet Sportsbook
When: Monday, September 18 pm, 2023, 8:15 ET
Where: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh
Radio: Westwood One
Live Stream: FuboTV
NFL Odds: Cleveland -2 / O/U 39.5 // Cleveland -130 / Pittsburgh +110
Why should you bet on the Browns?
Cleveland entered their season opener as one-point favorites over Cincinnati and rolled by three touchdowns. Even though Deshaun Watson still looked rusty at quarterback, the defense and running game looked much better than the team that went 7-10 a year ago. Watson threw for just 154 yards against the Bengals, with a touchdown pass and a pick. He has a long way to go to get back to the elite form that he showed when he was with the Houston Texans.
The running game features Nick Chubb, one of the league’s top tailbacks. He ran for 1,525 yards in 2022 and rumbled for 106 yards, averaging 5.9 yards per carry, against Cincinnati in Week 1. In the Browns’ two games against Pittsburgh last year, Chubb ran for 190 yards. Wide receiver Amari Cooper didn’t have a big day against Cincinnati, just picking up 37 receiving yards, but if Watson can get back up to NFL game speed, then Cooper’s productivity should increase as well. On defense, the Browns only permitted 142 total yards, as Myles Garrett picked up a sack.
Bet on the Browns to Win Today
Why should you put your money on the Steelers?
The Steelers continued head coach Mike Tomlin’s impressive run without a losing season in the Steel City last year, posting a 9-8 record despite working in a rookie quarterback. They did start slowly last year as well, going 1-4 out of the gate before going 8-4 down the stretch. Kenny Pickett showed a lot of potential in his rookie campaign, but he hit a wall in the opener, throwing two picks to go along with a touchdown pass and 232 receiving yards. The 49ers do have an elite defense, but it looks like the Browns might have one as well.
In the running game, Pittsburgh did not do a lot in their opener because they fell behind in such a hurry. The team only carried the ball 10 times in the game, and Najee Harris led the club with 31 yards on the ground. Last year, Najee Harris ran for 1,034 yards. Wide receiver Diontae Johnson injured his hamstring in the opener and is not available for Week 2, making the play of Pat Freiermuth and Harris even more important.
On defense, Pittsburgh permitted 188 rushing yards against the 49ers, and this week could be similar given Cleveland’s O-line and ground scheme. T.J. Watt did have three sacks, and cornerback Patrick Peterson broke up a pair of passes, but that front seven will need to stand taller against the run if the Steelers want to avoid another long day.
Bet on the Steelers to Win Today
MNF Final Score and Prediction
This line opened at Pittsburgh -1 before heading three points in Cleveland’s direction. Pittsburgh won’t play as poorly as they did in the opener, but I’m still not sure they can shut down the Browns’ running game. I’m also not sure that Pickett and Harris can make enough of a dent in the Cleveland D. I predict a final score of Cleveland 20, Pittsburgh 16.
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