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#pounditSunday, January 24, 2021

Browns open as favorites to win AFC North, taking plenty of action

Baker Mayfield

The Cleveland Browns have had by far the most exciting offseason of any team in the NFL this year, and Las Vegas is feeling the impact in a big way.

According to ESPN’s Ben Fawkes, the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook over the weekend opened the Browns as favorites to win the AFC North division this season. They’re listed with +140 odds, and the Pittsburgh Steelers are not far behind with +160. For reference, the New England Patriots are listed as -700 to win the AFC East once again.

The SuperBook also moved the Browns from 25-1 to 14-1 odds to win the Super Bowl after they traded for Odell Beckham Jr. The shift in odds has not discouraged the public from betting on them, as Fawkes notes Cleveland has been the most bet-on team to win the Super Bowl at DraftKings Sportsbook in New Jersey.

SuperBook director John Murray told ESPN he is not surprised by all the action on the Browns, and he believes they could have won the AFC North last year if they gave Baker Mayfield the starting quarterback job sooner and didn’t wait so long to fire Hue Jackson.

“They have the most talented roster in the division, and they are the team the public will be looking to bet,” Murray said. “Multiple big-name stars means public fascination, and I think they would’ve won the division last season had they gone with Kitchens/Mayfield duo from Week 1.”

If you want to get an idea of how excited fans are over the moves the Browns have made, look no further than the young man who had 911 called on him because of how he reacted to the Beckham trade. The Browns were 7-8-1 a year ago after not winning a single game in 2017. Expectations surrounding the team have not been this high in years.

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