The Dark Horse of the NFL: The Cleveland Browns

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When you think of the Cleveland Browns, you think about a disgruntled franchise who has failed time and time again, whose best draft day seemed to be, well, from the movie, Draft Day. The Browns, point blank, have not put a good product on the field, and have been struggling for decades to try and get it right. With new General Manager John Dorsey, the team has started to fall into place, putting a few franchise pieces together, ultimately giving themselves a real shot to make some noise as a dark horse this season. The team couldn’t seem to get it right at the quarterback position going through 31 starters since 1999, including the likes of Tim Couch, Brady Quinn, and DeShone Kizer. However, the Browns have finally seemed to have found a stud with Baker Mayfield. Finding a good fit for the most important position, the team now has built a juggernaut of talent around him. Their odds to win the always tough AFC North are set at +130 heading into the season, making them the favorite to get out of the division and punch their ticket to the playoffs for the first time since 2002. With the acquisition of Odell Beckham Jr. opposite old college teammate Jarvis Landry, a young David Njoku, who by the way only finished behind Landry in team receiving, and the one two punch of Kareem Hunt and Nick Chubb paired up in the backfield, look for the offense to explode off the scene this year. The last time we saw an offense this stacked with talent, we may have to go back to the 2016-2017 Atlanta Falcons team that made the Super Bowl. With two legitimate number one receivers, a young promising tight end, and a versatile set of running backs, the Browns are primed to put up big numbers. The defensive side looks to improve from last year as they set to line up proven vets alongside their young standouts. Myles Garrett is looking to build off last years break out performance and with the addition of Olivier Vernon, look for the duo to be a nightmare matchup for opposing QB’s. With young corners Denzel Ward, and Greedy Williams using their athleticism to sure up that secondary, the Browns defense may challenge the offense on who will be the better side of the ball. Baker Mayfield is looking to continue the streak of second year quarterbacks taking their team deep in the playoffs, meaning the Browns are poised to make a run. Their odds to win the Lombardi trophy currently stand at +1600, making them tied for the sixth favorite. Will the Browns finally turn around their bad fortune and break their streak of missed playoff appearances? The odds say so, and based off of their roster, they look equipped to make some Cleveland fans enjoy football again. More Odds: To make the playoffs: Yes -124 No- +102 To win the conference: +750