It’s an AFC North showdown as the 4-1 Cleveland Browns travel to Pittsburgh to battle the undefeated Steelers at Heinz Field as part of the Week 6 slate in the NFL on Sunday. This is the first of two meetings between the division foes as they’ll also conclude their regular seasons in Week 17.
The Steelers and Browns split their season series a year ago, with the first game infamously featuring the brawl centered around Myles Garrett and Mason Rudolph.
Through their first five games of the season, the Browns are making franchise history. And in a good way for a change. After Sunday’s win over the Colts, Cleveland is 4-1 for the first time since 1994 and they’ve now scored at least 30 points in four straight for the first time since 1968.
First-year head coach Kevin Stefanski already has more wins on his brief resume than the Browns had from 2015-2017 combined. They may have lost promising young running back Nick Chubb to injury, but this offense is living up to the potential, poised for their biggest divisional game in years.
A Steel Certainty
The Browns’ only loss this season came to the other 4-1 team in the AFC North, the Baltimore Ravens. And now they’ll face the other true divisional test in the unblemished Steelers. Pittsburgh is coming off an inter-state win over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, highlighted by Chase Claypool, who set a franchise rookie record with four touchdowns.
Getting Claypool the ball, of course, was Ben Roethlisberger who is about as guaranteed as death and taxes. In his career, Big Ben is 12-0 against the Browns at Heinz Field, and 23-2-1 overall, the most wins against Cleveland of any QB in NFL history.
Cleveland Browns/Pittsburgh Steelers Betting Lines
At print time (Monday) BetOnline lists the Steelers as 4-point favorites in this one, with an over/under of 50.5. Cleveland enters the matchup 3-2 ATS while Pittsburgh is 3-1.
Free Betting Pick
There’s no question the Browns are better, and winning has kept their personalities on offense engaged and the trade rumors at bay. But it should also be noted that their wins have come against Cincinnati, Washington, Dallas and Indy, while they were blown out by Baltimore.
Vegas is showing the Browns respect with this line and I expect it to go down even further as the week goes along. But I also expect the Steelers to bring the Browns back down to earth as Pittsburgh and Baltimore begin to create some separation in the division.
Spooky Express Free Pick: Steelers -4