Minnesota Vikings (5-2; 4-3 ATS; 3-4 O/U) vs. Cleveland Browns (0-7; 2-5 ATS: 2-5 O/U)
NFL: Sunday, October 29, 2017 at 9:00am EST
Line: Minnesota -9
The red-hot Minnesota Vikings will take on the Cleveland Browns in a week eight battle Sunday morning from Twickenham Stadium in London, England. The Vikings notched a 24-16 home win over the Ravens last week, and the Browns were edged 12-9 in overtime by the Titans last weekend. These clubs last met in 2013 in a game the Browns won by a 31-27 score.
Vikings Defense Shines in Third Straight Win
The Minnesota Vikings played outstanding defense once again in their solid 24-16 home win over the Ravens last week. Case Keenum was shaky at times, completing 20 of 31 passes for 188 yards with zero touchdowns and one interception. The 29-year old quarterback is not flashy, however, he has limited his turnovers, recording 1322 passing yards with a 5:2 TD to INT ratio. Teddy Bridgewater is practicing and could be back in a few weeks. Fifth-year running back Latavius Murray stepped up with his best effort of the season, collecting 113 yards on 18 carries and has now rushed for 210 yards on the year. Vikings leading receiver Adam Thielen brought in five catches for 41 yards. The 27-year old wide receiver is having a fine season, racking up 529 receiving yards. Stefon Diggs sat out again last week and is questionable for this week’s contest. The Vikings offense has scored at least 20 points in three straight games behind a strong running game.
The Vikings’ stifling defense was on full display again against the Ravens, limiting them to 208 total yards and held them to a 6 for 16 mark on third downs. Everson Griffen picked up another two sacks and has now made nine on the season. The Minnesota defense continues to shut down their opponents and feature one of the best units in the NFL. They are now in sole possession of first in the NFC North with a 5-2 record.
Browns Defense a Bright Spot in OT Loss to Titans
The Cleveland Browns could not jet the job done in overtime in their 12-9 home loss to the Titans last week to drop to 0-7 on the season. Head coach Hue Jackson benched DeShone Kizer after he struggled again. He tossed another two interceptions and now owns 3:11 TD to INT ratio on the season. Cody Kessler came in for his first action of the season completed 10 of 19 passes for 121 yards with no touchdowns and one pick. The Browns are in a state of flux at QB and could start Hogan, Kizer or Kessler. Isaiah Crowell had another rough performance in the loss, rushing for only 35 yards on 17 carries. The 24-year old running back has not been able to get going, recording only 287 rushing yards after a breakout season was anticipated. Third-year receiver Duke Johnson Jr. made his presence felt, bringing in six grabs for 45 yards and leads the Browns with 314 receiving yards. The Browns offense has been flat-out awful, with no signs of turning out it around.
The Browns defense was a bright spot in the loss last week, limiting the Titans to only 269 yards which included only 189 passing yards. Browns first overall pick Myles Garett made another sack last week and has now made four sacks in his first three career NFL games. The Browns defense is having success stopping the run this season. Cleveland is now 1-22 under head coach Hue Jackson.
The Minnesota Vikings are:
- 1-7 ATS in their last 8 road games.
- 4-9 ATS in their last 13 games in week eight.
The Cleveland Browns are:
- No Key Trends
I am taking the points with the Browns again this week. The Browns defense held the Titans to only nine points after four quarters before losing in overtime last week, and I believe their defense will allow them to hang around in this one. The Brows rush defense has been solid, they held DeMarco Murray to 59 rushing yards last week, and are only allowing an average of 83 rushing yards per game, so I am confident they can contain Latavius Murray and Jerrick McKinnon. The Vikings passing game is mediocre as Keenum has only tossed five touchdowns all season. The Vikings are not a high scoring team so I am confident they Browns can keep this one close.
Pick: Cleveland Browns +9
The Browns are coming off a tremendous defensive performance and the Vikings defense continues to shine. The Vikings defense should have no problem limiting the Browns poor offense, and the under is 10-2 in their last 12 games after allowing less than 90 rushing yards in their previous game. The Browns rush defense will make it tough for the Vikings to move the ball with regularity, and the under is 11-4 in their last 14 games overall. This contest has all the makings of a very low-scoring contest.