Cleveland Browns

Cleveland Browns

Down Goes Brown

The Browns went through the entire 2017 season without a win. They are the only team in NFL history other than the 2008 Detroit Lions to do so. The year prior the Browns went 1-15, giving the team the worst winning percentage over a two year span in NFL history. All of that adds up to make the Cleveland Browns betting odds for 2018 among the worst in the league.

These past two seasons are part of a larger trend that started in 2014, however, when a 7-4 Cleveland Brown team started to unravel, losing four straight and falling out of playoff contention. Their last win of that season was on November 23rd, and they have only won 4 games since.

With so much disappointment over the past four seasons, it seems ridiculous to think there is any hope for the Browns in 2018. At the same time, bottoming out like the Browns have is often what sparks a rebuild, which is what Cleveland is hoping to do this year.

Hope for the Next Generation

One piece of good news is that thanks to a 2017 trade with Houston, the Browns ended up with the number one and number four picks in the 2018 draft, which they used to get quarterback Baker Mayfield out of Oklahoma and cornerback Denzel Ward out of Ohio State.

Mayfield won a Heisman Trophy after being a walk on at Oklahoma, the first player in college football history to do so. Standing at six foot, he reads the field well and has a competitive streak, boasting a 38-8 record in 46 starts in college. He also broke a Big 12 record for yards per assist.

Ward was picked at number 4 to supply a need for cornerbacks in Cleveland. At Ohio State he had 15 broken passes and 2 interceptions and decided to forgo his senior season in order to be eligible for the 2018 NFL draft.

With the addition of these two players, the Browns now have three top 5 picks in the last two NFL drafts. In 2017, they selected defensive end Myles Garrett with the number one pick. Last year Garrett was hampered by injuries but still managed to lead the team in sacks despite only playing 10 games.

As these three players develop over the next few seasons, the Browns' betting odds will likely continue to improve.

Projections for 2018

This year will be the first full year under new GM John Dorsey, who was hired after former GM Sashi Brown was fired in December. Dorsey was formerly the GM of the Kansas City Chiefs, where the team posted a 43-21 record over four seasons under his management.

His arrival, along with that of Mayfield, Ward, and a hopefully healthy Garrett, does bring a sense of a new beginning to a franchise that is desperate for some kind of success. The Browns are currently riding a 15-year run without a playoff appearance, the longest such stretch in NFL history.

The hope for a better 2018 can be reflected in our NFL Sportsbook, where the Browns have slightly better odds to win the Super Bowl than 7 other teams; Redskins, Jets, Dolphins, Bills, Bears, Bengals and Cardinals.

Super Bowl 54 Betting Odds

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