Cleveland Browns vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Matchup Preview (1/10/21): Betting Odds, Depth Charts, Live Stream (Watch Online)
Date: Sunday, January 10th, 2020
Time: 8:15 PM ET
Location: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, PA
TV Coverage: NBC
Browns vs. Steelers Live Stream
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Cleveland Browns: Donovan Peoples-Jones (Q)
Pittsburgh Steelers: Terrell Edmunds (Q), Chris Boswell (Q)
Cleveland Browns Analysis
The Browns have made the playoffs, I repeat, the Browns have made the playoffs. They will match up with division rivals and have a chance to make a statement this week if they can get behind the ground game yet again. Nick Chubb had another stellar season when you factor in the missed 4 games due to injury. He rushed for over 1,000 yards and had 12 touchdowns this season. Kareem Hunt had over 800 yards and six scores. Hunt also tacked on 304 receiving yards and five receiving touchdowns. Once Odell Beckham Jr. went down there wasn’t a ton of production from the receiving core. Jarvis Landry had a 72-840-3 line and Rashard Higgins had a bulk of his production over the final few weeks. We know the state of this offense and it is using the ground game. It will be important for the Browns to not fall behind as Baker Mayfield and company is not built for a massive air it out style game, especially against a good Pittsburgh secondary. The defense allowed 26.2 points per game this season and production on the ground and through the air. The focus should be on the passing game and it will be tough to get to Big Ben given the quick throws he makes now.
Cleveland Browns Depth Chart
Pittsburgh Steelers Analysis
For most of the season, Pittsburgh was cruising with the offense in sync and the defense playing well. A few defenders ended up with season-ending injuries and the offense started to falter. We will see if they can prove that was just a blip on the radar. Pittsburgh averaged 26 points per game this season and allowed just 19.5. Pittsburgh didn’t have much success on the ground this year, averaging 84.4 yards per game on 3.6 yards per carry. A lot of the production was short passing with 6.3 yards per attempt but 35 passing touchdowns was a plus for this group. They have a strong receiving core that got even better with the addition of Chase Claypool. The rookie out of Notre Dame finished the year with 873 yards and nine touchdowns, which was second on the team. Diontae Johnson led the team in targets with 144 and led the team in yards. It is a three-man offense in the passing game, although Eric Ebron would get in on the action at times. We should continue to see them go this route offensively as both Jame Conner and Benny Snell were pretty ineffective most of the year.
Pittsburgh Steelers Depth Chart
Betting Corner: Steelers -4.5
Spread: PIT -4.5
Moneyline: CLE +220 / PIT -270
The Browns were not a team to trust against the spread this season as they were 6-10 on the year and 3-5 away from home. Pittsburgh was better, covering ten out of 16 games this season. Both offenses averaged over 25 points this season but the Steelers did a lot of it through the air in short passes while the Browns rushed for 148 yards per game. The Steelers have covered the last three games, which is not a good thing to think about when Mason Rudolph has been the quarterback for two of them. The secondary for the Browns continue to be my biggest issue with them in this one, and then you have to factor in trusting Baker Mayfield. Pittsburgh’s defense is still a problem, especially with TJ Watt being able to cause such havoc in the backfield. The matchup with the secondary and putting pressure on Mayfield is why the Steelers should cover this week.
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Daily Fantasy Picks
This could end up being one of those frustrating DFS games where we get some whacky touchdown names. The Steelers offense has been pass-heavy but not in terms of downfield but just using the short pass to mask what has been a lackluster rushing attack this season. Diontae Johnson remains the most attractive DFS option on the Steelers because the volume is so high and especially on DraftKings with the PPR scoring. Johnson has a floor of 13.6 fantasy points over his last eight games and a 75% consistency rating. The Browns defense ranks bottom-ten against the pass this season and I don’t mind attacking them here with Johnson, and also using Smith-Shuster and Chase Claypool to get a little bit lower ownership. For the Browns, a lot of the offense has been on the ground. Pittsburgh is a good run defense but losing two key linebackers this season is going to hurt. We have seen some backs have big games down the stretch against them and Chubb is an interesting name this week. It is a tough matchup for the Cleveland pass-catchers, but Rashard Higgins and Jarvis Landry are in play.