Greg Armstrong continues his 2018 NFL over/unders series…
Baltimore Ravens: O/U 8 Wins
Is Joe Flacco still the quarterback? Yes? Then 8 wins seems like the ceiling for this Ravens team. They added Michael Crabtree, John Brown and Hayden Hurst to a not so great offense and I’m really high on Alex Collins heading into the season. Their defense is still really good and has the potential to be a top six or seven defense when it’s all said and done.The defense is going to be the backbone of this team. I expect them to force a whole bunch of turnovers but how much trust can you put into Flacco? Robert Griffin III hasn’t shown he can be a starting quarterback and for as high as I am on Lamar Jackson, he’s simply not ready for the NFL yet.
I am not talking myself into the Ravens this year. That simply will not happen. Stay away from this but if you do bet on it take the under.
Under 8 Wins
Cincinatti Bengals: O/U 6.5 WinsThe Bengals are tough to get a read on this season. They’ve improved their offensive line, their defensive line is one of the best in football and the secondary has a lot of promise.
There are a still a bunch of question marks at key positions. We know what AJ Green is going to give us. What can we expect from Andy Dalton? Will Tyler Eifert stay healthy? Is John Ross going to take a step forward? What does Joe Mixon give you in his second year? If the answers to those questions are on the positive side, then the Bengals can win the division.
The reality is they’re still the Bengals and Marvin Lewis’ job would survive a nuclear war. They’ll have an up and down season and be on the outside looking in for the playoffs. I’ll give them seven wins.
Over 6.5 WinsCleveland Browns: O/U 5.5 Wins
One of the toughest teams to predict going into this year. The Browns added a boatload of talent, have become a hit with Hard Knocks and even if they tie without winning a game, they’ll have improved from last season.
They’re also still the Cleveland Browns. They also still have Hue Jackson as their head coach. Even with all of that talent, they still might be a year away from taking that giant leap that most expect them to make. They’re in the same position as the Jets. This season is more about progression and building for 2019 and 2020. They’re in a good position to build a team around Baker Mayfield and make some sort of run in a worsening AFC under his rookie deal.
Anything will be an improvement over last season. This will be a fun season filled a lot of talk of when will Hue Jackson get fired, when will they turn to Baker Mayfield and is there anybody on planet Earth who can stop Myles Garrett. Until the Browns show that they’re not the Browns, I’m taking the under.
Under 5.5 Wins
Pittsburgh Steelers: O/U 10.5 Wins
Pittsburgh feels like they’re stuck a in spin cycle. Every year they come into the season with a loaded offense and high expectations. The middle of the season comes with the “is this the year the Steelers can take down the Patriots?” columns. Then they either don’t beat New England, flame out in the playoffs or flame out in the playoffs to New England.
It’s no different this season. Big Ben gave us another fake threat of retirement, Antonio Brown is still the best receiver in football and Le’Veon Bell had an extended vacation this summer. They’re going to score a lot of points but without Ryan Shazier, their defense takes a big step back.
Vegas has this at almost impossible to figure out line. I can’t see them only winning 10 games but 11 seems just a tad high for them. If I had to put money down, I would have to lean towards 11. Now if I could parlay that with losing to New England and not making it out of the first round of the playoffs, I’d be in business.
Over 11 Wins