Cleveland Browns (5-3) at Cincinnati Bengals (5-2-1)
|Date & Time||Thursday November 6, 2014, 8:25 PM (EST)|
The Line: Cincinnati Bengals -6 -- Over/Under: 43.5
|TV Channel||Stream live sports and ESPN originals on ESPN+ for only $4.99 a month. Start your 7-day free trial today!|
The Browns and Bengals take the spotlight on Thursday Night Football in a prime time AFC North divisional show down in Cincinnati.
The Cleveland Browns were cool again in the offseason after drafting Johnny Manziel and with Lebron James making his return to the Cavs the city was the place to be for sports fans and socialites alike. However, we are mid way through the NFL season and the Browns have quietly pieced together a strong season without Johnny Football and are certainly in contention in the AFC North as first from last is separated by just a single game. The Browns have always had a strong defense and that was going to be the crutch once again this season as their offense was considered among the league's worst, especially their receiving corps without Josh Gordon. The Browns sit at 5-3 through their first eight games and have had great production out of the run game as both Terrence West and Ben Tate have been serviceable and the tandem will be leaned on heavily here as they look to keep AJ Green and the Bengals off the field. The Browns' secondary has been a bit disappointing though as Joe Haden hasn't had the year many expected of him and going up against a solid receiving tandem of Green and Mohammad Sanu isn't exactly what the doctor ordered.
The Bengals meanwhile looked like world beaters a couple of weeks ago as they were waxing teams left and right but after their tie and a couple of losses the fire around the Super Bowl talk has faded out a bit. Cincy has been bit by the injury bug a few times this season as Green has missed time with a toe injury and now sophomore running back Giovani Bernard will miss Thursday's game giving way to Jeremy Hill who will look to break out as the next great young running back in football. The Bengals are also a team that prides itself on its defense but they too have been underachieving a bit and will look to use this prime time platform as their coming out party. This game is shaping up to be a great one as we can expect from AFC North rivals and while many of these Thursday night show downs have been complete write offs for one team I think we finally see a mid week tilt worthy of chatter. I like the run games for both teams here and while the Bengals certainly have the edge offensively with Green I think the Browns can do enough on the ground to keep this game within a single score.