The Seattle Seahawks ride a four-game winning streak both straight up and against the spread into this week's home bout with the Cleveland Browns, who just covered a spread for the first time since mid-October. This game involves a large number on the spread, but the Seahawks loom as one of the few teams in the league able to deal with such situations.
Point spread: The Seahawks opened as 14-point favorites; the total was 43 early in the week, according to sportsbooks monitored by Odds Shark. (Line updates and matchup report)
NFL pick, via Odds Shark computer: 38.0-8.5 Seahawks
Why the Browns can cover the spread
With Johnny Manziel back in the saddle, Cleveland snapped a seven-game losing streak, beating the San Francisco 49ers last week 24-10. The Browns grabbed an early 7-0 lead and never let the Niners in the game, holding San Francisco out of the end zone until less than two minutes remained.
Manziel was fine, hitting on 21 of 31 throws for 270 yards with one touchdown and one pick, but a quarterback's best friend is a good running game. Cleveland rocked out for 230 yards on the ground as Isaiah Crowell rolled for 145 and two touchdowns.
The Browns are now 2-2 both SU and ATS in Manziel's starts this season, which isn't bad considering they're 1-8 SU and 3-6 ATS in games others have started behind center.
Why the Seahawks can cover the spread
The Carolina Panthers own the headlines for the moment, and deservedly so, but Seattle is quietly building momentum toward the playoffs, winning and covering its last four games, including an easy 35-6 victory at injury-depleted Baltimore last week.
The Seahawks got all they needed to win the game by scoring a touchdown on their opening drive, then secured the cover as 11-point road favorites by turning the second-half kickoff into another touchdown that gave them a 21-6 lead.
Two weeks ago, the Seahawks dominated the Vikings in Minnesota 38-7; just prior to that, they used a big fourth quarter to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers 39-30. So over its last nine quarters, Seattle has outscored opponents 92-22.
Double-digit favorites are only 6-11 ATS this NFL season, but this game might provide some balance toward that lean. Seattle, as tough as it may sound, by itself is 3-1 ATS as double-digit chalk, while Cleveland came up empty its only time out getting double digits. The smart money here sides with the Seahawks.
The Seahawks are 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games at home in December.
The Browns are 1-6 ATS in their last seven games.
The total has gone under in four of the Browns' last five games.
All point spread and lines data courtesy of Odds Shark, and all quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line movement updates and get the free odds tracker app.