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Cleveland Browns vs. New York Jets Point Spread - Pick

Cleveland Browns (0-1 SU, 0-1 ATS) vs. New York Jets (0-1 SU, 0-1 ATS)
Week 2 NFL
Date/Time: Monday Night Football, September 16, 2019 at 8:15PM EST
Where: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, New Jersey
TV: ESPN

By Loot, NFL Football Handicapper, Lootmeister.com

Point Spread: CLE -2.5/NYJ +2.5
Over/Under Total: 45.5

The Cleveland Browns make the trip to East Rutherford to take on the New York Jets in a week two matchup of teams looking to win their first game after not winning or covering in week one. The Jets really fell apart on Sunday, squandering a lead to the Bills after playing so well for three quarters, losing by a single point. For Cleveland, they fell well short of expectations, suffering a royal butt-whipping at home to the Tennessee Titans, 43-13. Which team can sort things out in time for this week two battle? Will the Browns play closer to the potential people have projected for them or will the Jets have a more-complete game at home?

The Browns were really the letdown of the weekend with their blowout home-loss to the Titans. Not to write them off in any way based on one loss, but it might be a foolhardy endeavor to think a team that could barely buy a win before last season is now destined for greatness in some sort of automatic way. Turning around a tradition of losing doesn't happen overnight and the Browns are still capable of putting forth the occasional clunker. I would look for that to get better moving forward. And the Titans, though not a team you'd figure would put up 43 points, is a pretty complete team and could be a better squad than some are projecting. In week three, the Browns play the Rams. After losing as favorites at home against Tennessee, they can ill-afford to slack-off in week two, but it might not be that easy on the road against a Jets team that really should have won in week one and will also be in an urgent state-of-mind. But for all the Browns were expecting, a loss this week would put them on the precipice of a really bad start.

A lot of things were working against the Browns on Sunday. Baker Mayfield throwing three picks and having one returned for a TD didn't help the cause. The Browns committed a robust 18 penalties in an afternoon of imprecise football. The run-game wasn't allowed to get uncorked with the Browns playing from behind. The Titans' defense played well and helped limit Mayfield's output to Jarvis Landry and new Browns receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. I wouldn't expect more of the same this week, but it's strange that they opened the season so badly.

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You have to wonder about the Cleveland defense following giving up 43 points to the Titans, not a team given to massive offensive outbursts. They were able to get after the QB, with Myles Garrett starting what he hopes is a big season with two sacks. Mariota still had a lot of success in picking apart the Browns' "D" and they need to address that. There are big-name free agents and very high draft picks throughout this unit. And for the most part, they've been underwhelming in their development and it's only right to be alarmed based on how badly they played in week one.

Again, the Jets' week one loss wasn't altogether less-painful. Up 16-0 and on their way to a routine win, they suddenly fell apart and let it get away, a tough pill to swallow for a team looking for an upgrade under new head coach Adam Gase. And with the signing of Le'Veon Bell and an upgraded O-line with Ryan Kalil at enter and Kelechi Osemele at guard, things were supposed to look better. But in the first game of Sam Darmold's second season, there was little to like. Scoring on defense was nice, but the missed extra point cost them. And scoring a lousy 8 points on offense was just a demoralizing event for this offense. Maybe they can find better success this week against a Cleveland defense that still has some work to do.

Darnold wasn't too bad in week one, going 28-for-41 with a TD pass to Bell. But they couldn't establish any consistency on that side of the ball. Bell didn't dazzle in week one, with 60 yards rushing and 32 yards aerially. But look for Bell to have better success this week and beyond, as the O-line congeals around him. Darnold connected with new receiver Jamison Crowder 14 times, though it didn't really amount to a whole bunch. They will be looking to incorporate receivers Robby Anderson and Quincy Enunwa and that might be in the cards based on how the Browns laid an egg on "D" in week one.

Defensively, the Jets had some good signs on Sunday, other than the late-game collapse. CJ Mosley (questionable), in his first game with the Jets, had a pick-six, but the "D" fell off after he left the game with a groin injury. They also lost Quinnen Williams (questionable) with an ankle injury and to be losing the key cogs of a revamped defense is not how you want to start the season. At the same time, for three quarters, they held the Bills to a mere field goal while playing on the road. The bad quarter spoiled it, but they at least showed what they're capable of, as they now look to finish games a little better.

Even if you think the Browns are overhyped and aren't going to make the playoffs, there is no denying the urgency that has to be felt already as they approach week two. That applies to the Jets also, as they don't want to fall to 0-2 at home in Gase's first season at the helm after all the moves they made. Still, with the Browns getting the Rams next week, a loss here would plunge them into a crisis-scenario—a tough spot to be in so early in the season. I see Cleveland seeing things go a little smother this week, as they get the win and cover against the Jets.

Loot's Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I'm betting on the Cleveland Browns minus 2.5 points. Did you know... that you could be wagering on games at discounted odds? There's a better than good chance that you're laying -110 odds (or more) with your book. Stop overpaying TODAY by making the switch to 5Dimes Sportsbook! You will be so glad that you did!

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