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The 2-6 Houston Texans are in Cleveland this Sunday for a matchup with the 5-3 Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium as part of the NFL’s Week 10 slate. This will be the 11th all-time meeting all-time between the two teams, with the Texans owning a 7-3 edge in the previous 10. Houston has won five straight between 2008 and 2018, as the Browns’ last win against this Sunday’s opponent came in November 2017, with Jamal Lewis and Kellen Winslow leading the way.
Fuller on a Streak
The Texans have won just two games through the first nine weeks of the season, both of which coming against the Jacksonville Jaguars, including last week. Deshaun Watson has been solid lately, throwing eight touchdowns over his last three games, to go along with zero interceptions.
Will Fuller was the subject of many a trade rumor heading into the deadline, but fortunately for Watson, the team didn’t deal the wideout. The two have hooked up for a score in six straight games now, the longest streak in the NFL this season.
After getting knocked out of the Jacksonville game with a concussion, it’s being reported that David Johnson will miss this weekend’s game as well, meaning Duke Johnson will handle much of the running back workload in his absence. Behind Duke is Buddy Howell and Scottie Phillips, not exactly household names, so we could see even more throws from Watson.
Need Chubb Back
The Browns had to stew on a Week 8 loss to the Raiders during their bye week, in which they were flat and ineffective all afternoon. However, they are expected to get a significant lift in their backfield this week with the return of Nick Chubb. Chubb hasn’t played since injuring his knee against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 4, and only the formality of being activated from the IR stands in his way.
Before his injury, the Browns were the best rushing team in the NFL, and they’ll look to get back to that style, using Chubb and Kareem Hunt as the 1-2 punch they were intended to be, especially with Odell Beckham, Jr (knee) on the shelf for the remainder of the year.
Betting Line and Pick
The Browns are 3.5-point favorites in this one, with an over/under of 53. Cleveland is 2-2 ATS at home this season, while the Texans have failed to cover a single spread on the road in 2020, entering this matchup at 0-4 away from NRG Stadium.
Neither team has been very profitable for bettors this season, entering this matchup with a combined 4-12 record ATS overall. The Browns have failed to cover in three straight, but they were missing Chubb in all of those games and without Chubb, Beckham, and Austin Hooper for two of them. Hooper is expected back also after recovering from an appendectomy. Baker Mayfield was put on the reserve list last weekend but had a negative COVID-19 test, so he’ll be good to go as well.
Pick: Browns -3.5