2005 Cleveland Browns NFL Handicapping Review
By Tom Wilkinson
Entering the 2004 season there was considerable confusion
amongst the sports handicapping community as to just who the
Cleveland Browns were. Where they the 9-7 playoff team of
2002 or the 5-11 fraud of 2003? Head coach Butch Davis was
under the gun heading into the season, but a 20-3 opening
week home win against habitual playoff team Baltimore as
3-point dogs inspired hope at the Dog Pound, and impressed
many sports betting players.
Cleveland traveled to meet another 2003 playoff team in
their next game at Dallas, which they lost 12-19 as 5-point
dogs. They lost again at the Giants both straight up and
against the sports betting odds before coming home and
facing Washington as a 3-point dog. No matter what
Clevelandâ€™s struggles were, Washington was clearly
over-valued as a home favorite, largely due to Joe Gibbs
return as head coach. Cleveland made those who reached with
Washington on their football picks list pay, defeating the
Redskins 17-13 to even their record at 2-2. After losing at
Pittsburgh both straight up and against the sports betting
odds the Browns beat Cincinnati at home 34-17 to put sports
betting players wagering on the Browns in the black, and
evened their record at 3-3. Next came a “defining moment”
game for Davis and the Browns.
NFC favorite Philadelphia came calling at Cleveland as a
7-point favorite on the sports betting odds boards.
Cleveland played their hearts out and nearly pulled off the
upset before losing in overtime 34-31. The draining defeat
came before the bye week as Cleveland fell to 3-4. It turned
out that the loss would destroy the Brownsâ€™ season.
Cleveland never got over the heartbreaking loss to the
Eagles and seemed to quit, blowing seven consecutive games
both straight up and against the sports betting odds, which
forced Davis to resign under intense fire during the
debacle. Sports betting players abandoned the Browns in
droves and many online sports betting blogs featured members
of the sports handicapping fraternity heading their list of
football picks with whoever was playing against Cleveland.
Once all value was shot and everyone turned against
Cleveland, however, they beat the sports betting odds in
their last two games, as the opposition was clearly
overpriced at online sports betting boards.
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