2016 Week 1 NFL Expert Picks Cleveland At Philadelphia
We all know how the Chip Kelly 2015 experiment in Philadelphia blew up in his face. We also know that the Cleveland Browns were among the worst teams last year, and that is before we open any chapter of the never-ending Johnny Manziel story. So, what can we expect from these two teams in 2016, particularly when they square it off against each other in Week 1?
One thing is for sure, nothing is certain about how these two teams will play in the upcoming season, but we should still be treated to some new brand of football from these franchises, thanks to the presence of new head coaches on both sidelines in Philly’s Doug Pederson and Cleveland’s Hue Jackson. Keeping that in mind, here is our online NFL betting lines preview of this matchup.
2016 Week 1 NFL Expert Picks Browns At Eagles
Where: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia
When: Sunday, September 11, 1:00 PM ET
NFL Lines: Cleveland (+7), Philadelphia (-7), OVER/UNDER 43.5
Why Bet on Cleveland
Following the firing of head coach Mike Pettine, the Cleveland Browns‘ front office decided to do a major overhaul in the team, shipping off several players and bringing a whole new bunch. One of the new faces in Cleveland, though a renowned figure in the league, is former No. 2 overall pick and once-celebrated Washington QB Robert Griffin III, who cut ties with the Redskins after he fell out favor with them as their starter. RG3 is a talented QB and has been reportedly doing well in Cleveland’s training camp as their potential go-to starter for 2016, but after struggling with injuries and shifty form over the past two seasons, your guess is as good as mine as to how he will perform. On paper, the presence of players like standout rookie draftee WR Corey Coleman and former Cincy offensive coordinator Jackson (as new Cleveland coach) on the sidelines should see a rejuvenated performance from RG3 and gang. Even so, with Philly having new faces and talents of its own, I’d probably advice you not be too expectant on the rebuilding Browns, yet.
Why Bet on Philadelphia
Besides Philadelphia’s 4-0 All-time straight up record against the Browns, the Eagles will be drawing a lot of confidence that the team maintained a good number of its talented players from last season, while adding a couple other solid talents in the offseason. Many Philly fans are hoping to see 2016 second draft choice Carson Wentz start in Week 1 after Sam Bradford all but did nothing as a starter last season, but reports from the Eagles training camp point towards Bradford (or free agent signing Chase Daniel) serving as the starter as Wentz acclimatizes to his position. Untrustworthy as Bradford seems to be as a starter, Philly fans can take comfort in the fact that the team has more established weapons to support the QB than in Cleveland’s squad; something that will certainly boost Philly’s chances of winning this game.
Expert NFL Predictions and Picks
Having more tried-and-tested veterans in the Philly team, along with the home advantage in a season-opener, should be a big impetus for the Eagles to put on a winning show against this Cleveland franchise that has never beaten them. That said, I fully buy into the reports that Griffin has worked on his game and history indicates that, even though the Browns are 0-4 against Philly, they have covered the spread in 3 of those 4 encounters. With that, I expect RG3 and Cleveland to fight heartedly and keep the game close to at least take away the points against the in-transition Eagles.
Final Game Score Prediction: Philadelphia 21, Cleveland 17
Best Pick: Cleveland (+7)