Heading into the 2019 season, the Browns were already one of football’s most interesting teams. But Tuesday’s trade for Odell Beckham sent the hype train careening off the rails, and it’s already being reflected in sports books. The Browns, who opened at 30/1 odds to win the 2020 Super Bowl on Jan. 15, have leapt up to 14/1 odds, per Westgate.

That puts them among the NFL favorites, tying them with the Packers (who have also been busy in free agency). The only teams with better odds are the Patriots, Rams, Chiefs and Saints — all four of which played in conference championship games earlier this year.

The Steelers effectively swapped places with the Browns after getting rid of Antonio Brown. They opened at 14/1 odds but have since dropped down to 30/1 due to the loss of Antonio Brown (Le’Veon Bell was already as good as gone when the odds opened up).

It’s easy to see what has folks excited about this Browns team. Baker Mayfield, under Freddie Kitchens, with Nick Chubb in the backfield and Odell Beckham Jr., Jarvis Landry and David Njoku to throw the ball to is going to be fun to watch. And let’s not forget that they may also get Kareem Hunt if he isn’t suspended. On defense, they added pass rusher Olivier Vernon opposite Myles Garrett. They look serious about winning right now. 

It’s a big jump, and the Browns have a long way to go, but the excitement is justified. Adding a superstar wide receiver doesn’t happen every day, and Cleveland looked excellent once Mayfield took over. Now we’ll get to see if Beckham can put the Browns over the top.

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