One of Sunday’s premier matchups has the Cincinnati Bengals hosting the Denver Broncos. Kickoff is set for 1:00 EST at Paul Brown Stadium and will be televised locally on CBS. Oddsmakers have the Bengals as a 3-point home favorite in the Week 3 contest with the total set at 41 points.
Broncos vs Bengals Vegas Point Spread Preview
Denver comes into this contest at 2-0 after last week’s 34-20 win at home over the Colts. The Broncos covered in that one as a 6-point favorite, improving to 2-0 ATS on the season.
Cincinnati’s attempt at a 2-0 start came up short in a 16-24 loss at rival Pittsburgh. The big concern with the Bengals is the health of starting quarterback Andy Dalton. He was visibility not 100% at the end of the game against the Steelers.
These two teams have played each of the last two years. The Broncos won last season 20-17 in overtime as a 4-point home favorite. The Bengals won the previous matchup at home 37-28 as a 3.5-point dog.
Free Betting Pick & Game Predictions: Broncos +3.5
I’m expecting Dalton to play in this one, but I still think the edge is with Denver. Especially at the current like with the Broncos catching a field goal plus the hook.
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I’ve mentioned it several times now, but Denver just isn’t getting the love you would expect to see for defending Super Bowl champion. I’m not saying they shouldn’t be a dog in Cincinnati, but they shouldn’t be catching more than a field goal.
For me this one comes down to the Broncos having an edge on both sides of the ball. Denver’s offense hasn’t been anything spectacular, but they have ran the ball effectively. The Broncos put up 148 yards on the ground against the Panthers and 134 more yards last week against the Colts.
Cincinnati has had a horrible time trying to contain the run. They allowed 152 yards on the ground against the Jets in Week 1 and 124 last week to the Steelers. As long as Denver can run the ball, Trevor Siemian is going to continue to play well. Keep in mind a key reason for the Bengals struggles against the run is the absence of Vontaze Burfict. He’s not eligible to return from his suspension until Week 4.
Coming into the season the Bengals looked to have one of the better offensive lines. So far that hasn’t been the case. Cincinnati has 103 combined rushing yards in their first two games. Andy Dalton has also been sacked 8 times, 7 coming in the opener against the Jets.
When you can’t run the football, it’s hard to have success against Denver’s defense. Not only do the Broncos have a great pass rush, but they are loaded with talent in the secondary.
It’s also worth noting Denver has thrived as an underdog under Gary Kubiak. They are a perfect 6-0 ATS in this spot, winning on average by a score of 26.0 to 20.0. At the same time, we see that the Bengals are just 6-17 ATS in their last 23 after playing 2 straight on the road.