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Denver Broncos at Cleveland Browns Betting Preview/Player Prop

21 October 2021

Week 7 of the NFL season kicks off on Thursday night as the Cleveland Browns host the Denver Broncos. Both teams are considered playoff contenders in the AFC, and this game could go a long way in the playoff race.

Denver got off to a perfect 3-0 start to the season, but things have really fallen apart for them in the last three weeks. The Broncos have lost three straight games, and playing the Browns on the road in Cleveland won’t be an easy task.

Cleveland is also 3-3, and they have lost their last two games. The Browns have faced a difficult schedule up to this point, but they have to find a way to get their season back on track.

The Cleveland Browns are 3.5-point favorites over the Denver Broncos on Thursday Night Football.

Denver Needs Defense to Deliver

If the Broncos are going to have any chance at winning this game, then the defense is going to have to lead the way. Denver is allowing just 18 points per game, and a similar effort will be needed in this one.

Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is listed as questionable for the game on Thursday night, and the Broncos need him back at 100 percent. Denver is scoring just 21 points per game, and they have to find a way to challenge opposing defenses.

Wide receiver Courtland Sutton has turned into an explosive player this season, leading the Broncos with 471 receiving yards and two touchdowns.

Browns Are Going to Run

The Cleveland Browns are going to run the football on Thursday night, and that is the same strategy they use every game. Cleveland is averaging nearly 170 rushing yards per game, and Nick Chubb leads the way with 523 yards this season.

Quarterback Baker Mayfield is not playing in Week 7, and it will be Case Keenum that is calling the shots. Cleveland has had a tough time finding a consistent passing attack, and it will be up to the veteran to deliver.

On defense, Cleveland has the ability to get after the quarterback, but the secondary has struggled at times. The Browns aren’t facing a great offense on Thursday, and that could allow this unit to get back on track.

Browns Blow Out Broncos

There might be plenty of injury concerns on the part of the Cleveland Browns, but there is still enough talent on this roster to win a big game. Cleveland is going to run the football a ton on Thursday night, and few teams have what it takes to slow them down.

Denver just can’t consistently find enough offense, and that is going to plague them again in Week 7. The Broncos can keep this game close with their defense, but ultimately it will be the Browns that pull away for the win.

Thursday Night Football games are always tough to predict, but everything says that the Browns get back on track in this one. Bet the Cleveland Browns -3.5 as they cruise to a double-digit win to kick off Week 7.

Player Prop

Case Keenum (-122) Over 18.5 Pass Completions

Teams sign veteran QBs as backups precisely for the scenario the Browns find themselves in tonight. Baker Mayfield is out with a shoulder injury and into his place steps nine-year veteran Case Keenum.

This is not Keenum’s first rodeo and, in fact, it’s not even the first time he’s filled this role with current head coach Kevin Stefanski. Back in 2017 when Stefanski was the QB coach for the Vikings, Sam Bradford went down in Week 2 with a knee injury.

Keenum came in and took Minnesota all the way to the NFC Championship game with the highlight of the Vikings season – and frankly the whole league – coming on his Minneapolis Miracle 61-yard TD pass to Stefon Diggs as time expired to beat New Orleans in the playoffs.

The 33-year-old also had starting gigs in Denver and Washington before settling into the backup role with Cleveland in 2020. He’s been used sparingly the last two seasons, throwing only 13 times and completing six. So there will be some rust for sure.

But with the Browns in need of snapping a two-game losing streak and facing the fourth-ranked rushing defense in the league in the Broncos, Stefanski can ill-afford to play it too safe with Keenum. We’ll take the veteran backup (-122) to step in and complete over 18.5 passes against Denver.

Keep up with your latest NFL news coverage and betting pick previews at The Dunkel Index.

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