Cleveland Browns vs Atlanta Falcons Matchup Preview - October 2nd, 2022


Sunday the Cleveland Browns (2-1) will battle the Atlanta Falcons (1-2). Oddsmakers peg the Browns as the slight favorite with an implied win probablity of 52%, leaving the Falcons with a 48% chance to record a win. The current spread is the Browns -1.0 with a Game Total of 48.5.

Cleveland's biggest strength has been their rushing offense, ranking #5 in the league with 5.06 yards per carry. The key component of any team's ground game is their offensive line. The best running back can't do much if the line doesn't open up holes for them, and a worst running back can find success if he's given open space. Cleveland's o-line ranks #1-best in this regard. This represents a particular advantage for Cleveland given that the Falcons have struggled so much to stop the run this year, allowing 4.69 yards per carry (#9-worst in the league). In terms of their defense, the Browns have ranked #12 in the league in total yards allowed per game. Opposing offenses have passed for 230 yards per game through the air against them (#13 in football). On the ground, opposing ball-carriers have ranked #12 with 4.33 yards per carry. Cleveland has been most effective in shutting down opposing running backs, holding them to 31 yards per game (#7-best). Cleveland has been least effective in shutting down opposing running backs, giving up a 86.5% completion rate (#4-highest).

Atlanta's primary advantage has been their run offense, which ranks #2 in football at 5.44 yards per carry. This presents a decided advantage for Atlanta given that the Browns haven't had much success in stopping the run this year, giving up 4.33 yards per carry (#21-worst in the NFL). When it comes to their defense, the Falcons check in at #26 in football when it comes to total yards allowed per game. Opposing air attacks have notched 243 yards per game against Atlanta this year (#24 in football). Opposing ball-carriers have ranked #24 against them with 4.69 yards per ground attempt. Atlanta's defensive effectiveness bottoms out when it comes to defending opposing wide receivers, who have scorched them for 160 yards per game (#7-worst in the league).

Cleveland Browns Insights

  • The Sharp Model projects Jacoby Brissett to be much more involved in his team's rushing attack this week (15.9% projected Carry Share) than he has been this year (4.7% in games he has played).

  • Jacoby Brissett's throwing precision has been refined this season, with his Completion% increasing from 60.5% to 68.1%.

  • The Cleveland Browns have risked going for it on 4th down 22.2% of the time since the start of last season (9th-most in football), which usually means more offensive volume, more touchdown potential, and higher offensive metrics across the board.

Atlanta Falcons Insights

  • The Sharp Model projects this game to have the lowest volume of plays run on the slate this week at 124.4 plays, based on the tendencies of each team and game dynamics.

  • Cordarrelle Patterson has posted a whopping 14.0 air yards per game since the start of last season: 99th percentile among RBs. (That may not sound like a lot, but most RBs have negative air yards because they are targeted behind the line of scrimmage).

  • The Sharp Model projects Kyle Pitts to compile 0.37 receiving touchdowns in this contest, on average, placing him in the 98th percentile among tight ends.

Betting Trends

  • The Atlanta Falcons have covered the Spread in 4 of their last 5 games (+2.90 Units / 52% ROI)

  • The Cleveland Browns have scored first in 12 of their last 16 games (+8.10 Units / 39% ROI)

  • Bryan Edwards has hit the Receiving Yards Under in 11 of his last 16 games (+4.35 Units / 21% ROI)