Bengals Steelers Spread Line and Betting Predictions Week 14

The Cincinnati Bengals have been finding new and unique ways to lose games all season, with the most recent embarrassment happening last week against New Orleans. After playing the Saints tough all game, it looked like Cincy were going to pull off an upset, but then they jumped offside on 4th and short, setting up the winning touchdown on the next play. Considering that the Saints were lining up with the sole intention of trying to lure the Bengals offside in a move that probably doesn’t work on the most disorganized of high school teams, this was truly an all time low in an already pathetic season for the Bengals, or more accurately, the Bungles. Their season outlook doesn’t get much brighter as they head into Pittsburgh this week to take on the Steelers. Cincinnati is in need of a complete overhaul, particularly on offense, where it is time for a youth movement that should not include quarterback Carson Palmer or the receiving duo of Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco, who seem to be too concerned with their reality show to realize that they are staring a 2-14 season in the face. Palmer has been maddeningly inconsistent this year, achieving a QB rating of over 100 only 3 times, and throwing for 2 or more interceptions 5 times, including in 3 of his last 4 games. With that said, he is still piling up a fair amount of passing yards per game, as he has thrown for a shade over 3000 on the season. He had an impressive if not spectacular showing against the Steelers back in week 9, throwing for 248 yards, with 2 touchdowns and a pick in a 27-21 loss. Owens is actually having a very productive year, hauling in 9 touchdowns and accumulating 961 yards. One of his best games was, in fact, against the Steelers, where he had 2 touchdowns and 141 yards on 10 catches. Owens and his partner in crime, Ochocinco, are going to need to post numbers like those for Cincy to have a chance at keeping it close.

Pittsburgh got its biggest win of the season last week against division rivals Baltimore, coming from behind to take a hard fought game 13-10. They now have sole position of the top spot in the AFC North at 9-3, and have the inside track on the path to a first round bye, and possibly home field advantage throughout the playoffs, depending on their friends the Patriots. Still though, with the Ravens still lurking only a game back, the Steelers can not afford any sort of letdown this week against the Bengals. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger suffered a broken nose last week, and had to have surgery to repair it. That won’t stop him from being behind center for the Steelers though. The same can not be said for tight end Heath Miller, however, who suffered a concussion at the hands of Ravens linebacker Jameel McClain. This shouldn’t be too detrimental to the Steelers’ offensive plans, as they will still have the steady Hines Ward and speedster Mike Wallace to throw to, while Rashard Mendenhall continues to provide Pittsburgh with a powerful running threat. The trademark of this team remains the defense though, who were fantastic last week in stopping Joe Flacco and company from achieving any real semblance of an offense (Ravens receiver compared his team’s offense to the Bad News Bears, so the Steelers must have been doing something right). Troy Polumalu had his usual game changing play with a 4th quarter forced fumble on Flacco, which set up the winning touchdown for Pittsburgh. The Steelers almost let the Bengals come back and steal a win when the two teams met earlier in the year, and you can bet Mike Tomlin has been reminding his team of that during practice this week.

Despite their record, the Bengals have a capable offense, as they proved last week when they put up an impressive 30 points against a solid New Orleans defense. You can also bet that Marvin Lewis’ crew would love to play spoiler against a division rival, as any stumble from Pittsburgh could swing the door back open for Baltimore. The Steelers have been surprisingly generous against the pass, so expect Palmer to try and march down field that way (plus they will likely be playing from behind anyway). Even if the Bengals wanted to run it, the Steelers are basically impenetrable against the run, allowing a league best 62.3 yards on the ground. That is 22 yards better than that 2nd best team, which just shows how utterly dominating they are against the run. Conversely, the Bengals are allowing 222 yards through the air, and 125 on the ground, so the Steelers should be able to bring a balanced approach to their offensive game plan.

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Bengals vs Steelers Spread, Line and Betting Odds:

Spread:

Cincinatti Bengals +8
@ Pittsburgh Steelers -8

Game Total:

Over (-110)
39.5
Under (-110)

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Bengals vs Steelers Betting Predictions/Picks for Week 14

Spread Prediction (TOP PLAY): This game is a mismatch in virtually every area, as the Steelers defense will eliminate Cedric Benson from doing much of anything, while Troy Polamalu and company should have no problem forcing a couple of turnovers from Carson Palmer, who has been prone to poor decision making this season. Meanwhile, the Bengals have been giving out points like they are candy canes as of late, allowing Buffalo (another 2-10 team) to score 49 points on them, followed by giving up 26 to the Jets, and 34 to the Saints. This defense, once a fearsome group, have seemingly checked out. On top of that, the Bengals are 2-7 ATS in their last 9, and 1-5 ATS in their last 6 played within their conference. The Steelers should control this one from start to finish, as they look to add a little distance between them and the field in the AFC North.

Pick (TOP PLAY): Steelers -8

Game Total Prediction: It has definitely been a while since a spread has dropped below 40, but any time the Steelers defense is involved, one can’t be too surprised by small totals. With that said, Pittsburgh only scored 13 points last game, which definitely will have Mike Tomlin pressuring the offense to come up with a better effort against a much easier Bengals defense. While this definitely won’t be a smorgasbord of points, working together these teams should be able to crack 40. When the Steelers score under 15 in their previous game, the Over is 5-0, and is 7-2 in Pittsburgh’s last 9 against teams with a losing record. Plunk it down on the Over in this AFC North battle.

Pick: Over 39.5

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