Broncos vs. Browns Week 7 TNF NFL Betting Odds, Picks, and Preview
Broncos vs. Browns Week 7 NFL Betting Odds, Picks, and Preview
After opening as six-point NFL betting favorites, the Browns are now laying only a field goal ahead of a matchup between two teams looking to rebound.
This week’s NFL Thursday Night Football matchup is critical for the two teams involved. Both the Denver Broncos and Cleveland Browns got their respective seasons off to strong starts. However, after combining for five losses over the last three weeks, both teams are in danger of falling below the .500 mark. The NFL betting odds have tabbed the home side as a short favorite ahead of this Broncos vs Browns TNF showdown.
Broncos vs. Browns Week 7 NFL Date, Time, Where to Watch, and Complete Odds
Denver Broncos (3-3 SU, 3-3 ATS) vs. Cleveland Browns (3-3 SU, 3-3 ATS)
Date: Thursday, October 21, 2021Start Time: 8:20 PM ESTLocation: FirstEnergy Stadium — Cleveland, OHTV Coverage: FOX, NFL Network
Denver Broncos Betting Preview
The Broncos’ 3-0 start to the season feels like a distant memory. Many NFL betting analysts were concerned about this team despite the fast start given the weak competition they faced in each of their first three games. Sure enough, Denver has regressed mightily when matched up against higher-quality opponents. The latest setback came last week as a betting favorite at home against the Las Vegas Raiders. The Broncos were thoroughly outclassed in that game. While the final margin was only 10 points, Denver needed garbage time just to make the score respectable.
Forced to play from behind, the Broncos relied on Teddy Bridgewater much more than they would have liked in the Week 6 loss. He attempted a whopping 49 passes. Although he completed 35 of them for over 330 yards and three scores, Bridgewater also threw a trio of interceptions. That came as a shock given his reputation for taking care of the football.
The real cause for concern from Denver’s Week 6 loss was the performance of the defense. Largely viewed as a top-five defense, the Broncos got beat by the same alignment and play-call multiple times on Sunday. After shutting out the New York Jets back in Week 3, the Broncos have now allowed 23 points or more in three consecutive games.
Cleveland Browns Betting Preview
Like the Broncos, the Browns were sitting at 3-1 through four weeks of play. With their lone loss coming in a tight contest against the reigning AFC Champion Kansas City Chiefs back in Week 1, many believed Cleveland was on its way to living up to the high expectations. Fast-forward two weeks and the Browns are limping into this week’s Thursday night NFL betting matchup having lost two straight. A loss to the Los Angeles Chargers in an offensive shootout was followed up by a mistake-filled defeat against the unbeaten Arizona Cardinals last Sunday.
One of the major concerns facing the Browns this season is their quarterback play. For as great as Baker Mayfield was against the Chargers, he was just as bad both this past week and in a low-scoring Week 4 win. Further complicating matters for Cleveland offensively going forward is a mounting injury count. Lead running back Nick Chubb missed the team’s Week 6 contest with a calf injury. He has already been ruled out for this Week 7 TNF matchup as well. Cleveland also lost Chubb’s backfield cohort, Kareem Hunt, to a calf injury of his own this past week. He was placed on IR, ensuring that he will miss at least the next three games.
With the Browns’ top two backs out, the onus will likely fall more heavily on Mayfield to make plays on Thursday. Unfortunately, the state of the offensive line charged with protecting him is also not great. Tackles Jack Conklin and Jedrick Wills joined center J.C. Tretter in missing practice both Monday and Tuesday.
Broncos vs. Browns Betting Odds and Line Movement
Oddsmakers originally opened the Browns as a six-point NFL betting favorite on the lookahead lines last week. Thanks to the team’s uninspiring Week 6 performance and mounting injury list, that number has dropped down to a three-point spread. Despite the Broncos playing a very poor game of their own last week, they have seen the odds move sharply in their favor ahead of this TNF showdown. The adjusted moneyline pricing gives Cleveland a 61.5% chance of winning this game outright as home favorites.
The low NFL betting total of 42.5 is also noteworthy ahead of this matchup. This line has dropped down a point and a half from the lookahead number of 44. After getting embarrassed on their home field, the Broncos’ defense is primed for a bounce-back game. The rash of injuries to the Browns’ backfield and offensive line could bolster Denver’s efforts. While Cleveland’s defense is also littered with injuries, the unit is extremely talented and should be able to make life difficult for the inconsistent Broncos offense.
Broncos vs. Browns Betting Picks and Prediction
While the Browns generated much more media hype ahead of the season, both of these teams came into the year with playoff aspirations. Now that each squad is dealing with adversity, this Thursday’s NFL betting matchup could prove critical in setting the stage for the coming weeks.
The defense was largely expected to be the backbone of the Broncos this season. However, through six weeks, Denver ranks only 20th in adjusted defensive efficiency. Vic Fangio and his players have too much pride to not rebound emphatically from last Sunday’s embarrassing performance against the Raiders. With a diminished ground game to lean on, Baker Mayfield could be prone to making multiple costly mistakes against a talented defense.
In addition, Teddy Bridgewater didn’t garner the nickname, “Teddy Covers” by accident. He has covered the NFL betting point spread in just under 90% of his 27 road starts. He has been an underdog in 22 of those games, winning 10 of them outright. Look for him to take better care of the football and make enough timely plays for the Broncos to both cover and win outright on Thursday.