Cincinnati Bengals at Baltimore Ravens Pick – Cincinnati (+230)
Two of the top teams in the AFC North so far in the 2021 season go at it on Sunday when the Baltimore Ravens take on the Cincinnati Bengals. The winner will have first-place bragging rights and a leg up heading into the remainder of the season.
In honor of it being Bengals week for the Ravens, here’s a video of a moment where Lamar Jackson showed proof that “he is Houdini” pic.twitter.com/ljRZNEh8hi
The Ravens were expected to be there at the start of the season, but Cincinnati is ahead of schedule in terms of their rebuilding efforts. It’s a 1 PM Eastern Time kickoff from M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Maryland.
Cincinnati Bengals at Baltimore Ravens Game Preview
The Ravens and Bengals have met twice a year every year since Baltimore reentered the league back in 1996. As AFC North Rivals, there hasn’t been much separation between the two teams when they’ve played. Baltimore leads the series, but only by an edge of 27-23.
Cincinnati was picked to finish last in the AFC North by most preseason assessments. But they’ve upended those expectations with their 4-2 start. In fact, considering that their two losses were each by a field goal, it’s easy to imagine them being even higher up the AFC ladder.
The Ravens started the year by blowing a big lead in a loss to Las Vegas. But they came from behind with miraculous wins the following two weeks, and haven’t slowed since. They’ve won five in a row and are coming off their best performance yet in a dominant win over the LA Chargers.
Opening Odds and Line Movement for Game
This point spread has been pretty steady since it opened up at six points at the beginning of the week. It moved up to 6 1/2 and then dropped back again. Recent movement has again pushed it to 6 1/2 points in the direction of the favored Ravens.
The over/under line began at 48 1/2 points at the start of the week. But it has steadily dropped as bettors apparently believe this will be much more of a defensive game. After it sidled down two points, it now stands at a somewhat modest 46 1/2 points.
Head to Head Betting Trends
Baltimore comes into the matchup having won five games in row over the Bengals
The Ravens have covered the last three, but the Bengals had been on a streak of four games in a row of covering prior to that
The Bengals hasn’t won at Baltimore since the 2017 season
The under has been the correct wager in three of the last four games that these two teams have played
In the Ravens recent three game winning streak over the Bengals, the margin of victory has been nearly 32 points
Cincinnati Bengals Betting Trends
In all three of the Bengals road games so far this season and five of their six games overall, the under has been the correct bet
Although Cincy has won two of their three road games, they’ve only covered the spread in one off them
The Bengals have covered the spread in four of their last October games
Cincy has covered the spread at a rate of 50 percent as an underdog since 2019
They’ve covered the spread in 56 percent of their road games over the past three seasons
Cincy is .500 against the spread in games within the AFC North
They’ve won just 14 percent of their games against teams with winning records since the beginning of the 2019 campaign
The Bengals are 21 games below the spread in October games since 1993
Baltimore Ravens Betting Trends
Baltimore has won all three of their home games and covered the spread in two of them as well
Two of the three games that the Ravens have played at home have gone over the points total number
Going back to last season, Baltimore has covered the spread in 71 percent of their last 14 games
In their last nine games against the AFC North, the Ravens has covered the spread 89 percent of the time
The Ravens have covered the spread against winning teams at a rate of 12-5 over the last three seasons
Baltimore is 17-13 as a favorite against the spread since the 2019 season
The Ravens have covered the spread at a rate of 55 percent when at home over the past three seasons
Baltimore has been excellent when on winning streaks, going 15-8 against the spread in games after winning the previous two games on their schedule
Free Bet and Game Prediction:
As much as Lamar Jackson has enjoyed a breakthrough season as a passer, this Ravens team wants to run the ball. They proved that they could still dominate on the ground against the Chargers last week. But Cincinnati is tougher against the run, as they’re in the Top 10 in the league in both defensive yards per carry and defensive rushing yards per game.
With Latavius Murray likely out for the game, the Ravens are once again thin at running back, with creaky veterans Le’Veon Bell and Devonta Freeman carrying the load. In other words, that will probably mean Jackson hurling it all over the field again, which has worked fine this year.
But he could face serious pressure throughout the game if they can’t run the ball too alleviate it. Trey Hendrickson is the Bengals top pass rusher, and he’ll be attacking a hole for the Ravens with star left tackle Ronnie Stanley out for the season. That might start Jackson turning the ball over.
The #Bengals big-money addition of Trey Hendrickson got some pushback this past offseason but he's been worth every penny.
Cincinnati also gets the reputation as a high-flying passing team, but they have also dedicated themselves to running the ball. In an ideal game, Joe Mixon will touch the ball 20 times. That means quarterback Joe Burrow can throw off play action to his talented wide receivers.
The Ravens secondary has held up well, led by outstanding Marlon Humphrey. But they might not have the depth to hang with Ja’Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, and Tyler Boyd, the Bengals excellent trio of wider receivers. Baltimore is allowing 7.3 yards per pass, which puts them in the bottom third in the league.
The absence of Stanley will hurt in this one, and Jackson might have to pass a little more than is comfortable for John Harbaugh and company. Cincinnati proved they could play Green Bay to the hilt. In this one, they’ll get the upset they just missed in that one.
Jim Beviglia joined Gamblingsites.org as a staff writer in 2018, parlaying his years of freelance writing into contributions on a number of different topics. He handles the sport of horse racing for GamblingSites.org and the intersection between the worlds of cryptocurrency and online gambling in a weekly blog.
For his full-time job, Jim handles the television and track announcing duties at a h ...
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