NFL Thursday Night Betting Picks: Cleveland Browns vs. Baltimore Ravens

Cleveland Browns at Baltimore Ravens
Thursday, 9/27/12, 8:20 PM EST, TV:  NFL Network
Opening Point Spread:  Baltimore -12
Current Betting Line:  Baltimore -12
Opening Total:  45
Current Total:  44
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

Ravens Saints NFL Game Preview
Baltimore Ravens RB Ray Rice has put up great numbers against the Cleveland Browns in the past

Cleveland is still searching for its first victory of the 2012 NFL season, and it will have a hard time picking it up in this spot, considering the franchise has lost its last eight games against Baltimore.  The Browns haven’t started a year with four losses since 2009, something that the locker room is focused on.  “I look and we’ve got 13 games left,” commented Browns head coach Pat Shurmur.  “We’ve got a division opponent on the road with a great opportunity to get the ship righted on Thursday night.”  Cleveland is 4-2 ATS as a road underdog of 10.5 to 14 points the last two-plus seasons, which is an important betting trend to consider when making your pro football predictions this week.

The Browns will look to get rookie running back Trent Richardson the football, as he comes in with 175 rushing yards on 50 carries, but they’ll have a tough time moving the ball against a stop unit that is limiting opponents to 3.3 yards per carry.  Cleveland will be missing one of its best threats in the passing game, as wide receiver Mohamed Massaquoi is out for this contest with a hamstring injury.

Baltimore may lack motivation in this AFC North matchup after gaining revenge with a 31-30 victory over the New England Patriots Sunday night in a rematch of last year’s AFC championship game.  “I never liked it when the Thursday night game came out,” commented Ravens safety Ed Reed.  The Ravens offense has been putting up some points this year, which has led directly to the OVER cashing in all three of their contests to start the season.  Baltimore has won its last six games as a favorite of 10 or more points, but is 1-5 ATS in that situation.

The Ravens are 19-7 all-time in this series, with the UNDER going 5-1 in the last six meetings.  Baltimore will look to get the ball into the hands of running back Ray Rice, who has rushed for 775 career yards in eight games in this rivalry, averaging 96.9 rushing yards per contest.  Quarterback Joe Flacco is second in the NFL with an AFC-best 913 passing yards to go with a 101.1 passer rating.

Sports bettors will likely play the Browns due to the Ravens being 0-5 ATS in their last five games after playing the Patriots.

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