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Cleveland Browns vs New York Jets Hall of Fame Game: NFL’s Return to Action This Thursday Night

Written by: Grant Mitchell
Published August 3, 2023
12 min read

The Cleveland Browns are taking on the New York Jets in the NFL’s return to action in the Hall of Fame Game Thursday night.

Although a few of the big-name stars will sit out the game, the end of football’s hiatus is a sign that the regular season and the 18-week push to the playoffs is just around the corner. 

Here, we will go over all of the major betting markets for the Browns vs. Jets game and talk about our favorite plays.

Cleveland Browns vs New York Jets Predictions

Browns vs. Jets Moneyline and Spread Odds and Pick

  • Spread: Browns +1.5 (-105), Jets -1.5 (-115)
  • Moneyline: Browns (+110), Jets (-130)

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The Hall of Fame Game is a yearly preseason football game that was named as such because it coincides with the weekend a new group of incomers is sworn into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The game itself is played in Canton and also signifies the start of a new NFL season.

Because it is only the start of the preseason, both teams are opting to keep some of their players on ice. Aaron Rodgers will skip the outing for the Jets, and Deshaun Watson and backup QB Joshua Dobbs will be sidelined for the Browns.

Zach Wilson, the Jets’ starter in 2022, will be active. That means that his competition at the quarterback position will be Kellen Mond and Dorian Thompson-Robinson.

Although Wilson was one of the worst starters in the league last season, his presence in the game is a strong reason to favor the Jets against the 1.5-point spread. He’s spent the summer soaking up knowledge from Rodgers and will only have to play a couple of series against the Browns’ starters before he faces second and third-stringers.

The preseason is largely about depth, rather than the standout stars (the opposite of a regular-season game). The Browns’ starting lineup has more holes in it than the Jets does, which means that the latter should cope with the constant line changes better. That’s another point for the Jets.

The Jets also have a defensive identity they cultivated last season and will aim to stick to. Offensive coordinators very rarely dial up any intricate plays to help keep their real game plans a secret, which means that the Jets should be able to sit in a standard defense all night and still effectively combat the Browns’ O.

All in all, we like the Jets to get the job done in this one. Although the spread represents more risk than the moneyline, the line of 1.5 points does not cross any significant numbers (three, six, and seven points), and it’s statistically unlikely they win by just one point to cover the moneyline but not the spread.

So, our favorite game pick for the Browns vs. Jets Hall of Fame Game is the Jets’ spread for the extra bit of value.

Browns vs. Jets Over/Under Odds and Picks

  • Over/under: Over 33.5 points (-105), under 33.5 points (-115)

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The 33.5-point total is far lower than the lowest Week 1 points total (40 in the Arizona Cardinals-Washington Commanders matchup) and might be lower than any regular-season line. That’s because the top QBs are missing out, and also because the coaches are going to be ultra-conservative with their playcalling (as previously mentioned).

On top of that, the players will be mixed and matched and will be kicking off all of the rust they built up while also getting their first taste of live-game action in half a year, which will really test their conditioning. 

With all that being said, we still like the over in this situation. The line has been placed so low that it will only take five total touchdowns to hit the over, and that’s more than reasonable.

The Jets averaged 26.3 points last preseason and scored at least 24 in all three games. The Browns also averaged 21.3 and scored 20+ in all three, which gives us enough of a precedent to believe they can go over when they meet on Thursday. 

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AUTHOR

Grant Mitchell

472 Articles

Grant is a sports and sports betting journalist who prides himself on delivering breaking news and insightful analyses of the industry. Grant graduated from Virginia Tech in 2021 and is feverishly pursuing his ambitions in the sports betting field.

In his free time, Grant can be found passionately watching sports, doing a workout, or searching for adventure with his friends.

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