The Cincinnati Bengals got through the Wild Card and are on their way to the divisional round. Their opponent last week put up a valiant effort but ultimately came up short. This week, the Bengals head to Tennessee to face Derrick Henry and the Titans. How the Bengals’ defense will deal with one of the best running backs in the league is a big question. One we plan to answer.
The Tennessee Titans received some much-needed rest since they were the No.1 seed. They were able to watch the Wild Card games and observe their opponent from home. The Titans come into this game as favorites, which shouldn’t be much of a surprise. However, they aren’t huge favorites as some may have originally thought they would be. So, who’s the best bet?
Tennessee Titans: Future Lies in Ability to Adapt
For many teams, making adjustments is vital, but few teams have learned that lesson this season as much as the Tennessee Titans. Tennessee has the fifth-best rushing offense in the NFL, averaging 141.41 yards per game. However, they need to have a backup plan in case the running game doesn’t go their way against Cincinnati. This is where Julio Jones and A.J. Brown will need to step in for Henry.
More importantly, Ryan Tannehill will need to do all he can to manage this game properly. He’ll also have to take a few risks without turning the ball over. Tannehill has thrown for 21 touchdowns and 14 interceptions this season with a QBR of 56.3. His QBR ranks eighth in the NFL, so we know how efficient he is. This is why we trust Tennessee to have a strong outing.
Cincinnati Bengals: No.1 Priority is Stopping the Run
For the Cincinnati Bengals, the game plan is very simple: they need to stop Derrick Henry and the run while attacking downfield on offense. The key here is getting Tennessee into an uncomfortable position. If the Bengals can score early and often, Tennessee will likely have to abandon the run. From there, they’ll play right into the No.7 scoring offenses game plan.
There’s no denying the show-stopping ability of the Bengals offense. With star quarterback Joe Burrow at the helm, Cincinnati averages 27.1 points per game and 259 yards passing per game. However, the offense isn’t the only factor that goes into winning games; they’ll need to be better on defense as well. The Bengals secondary allows 250.22 yards passing per game, 27th in the NFL. Those stats don’t bode well for Cincinnati.
As we mentioned earlier, the Titans come in as the favorites here, but only by 3.5 points. The Moneyline for this game has the Titans -180 and the Bengals +160. The total, is set at 47 with the odds even for both sides.
Strangely enough, both the Bengals and the Titans finished with the same ATS record in the regular season. At 10-7, each of these teams put up a reliable record at the sportsbook. One thing to keep in mind is that the Bengals were 6-2 ATS on the road. It’s also important to note that they’re 5-0 ATS in their last five games.
Cincinnati Bengals at Tennessee Titans Betting Prediction
After looking over what each team brings to this contest, we’ll go with the road team. Cincinnati has a diverse group of weapons and has been stout against the run this season. On average, they only allow 102.5 yards rushing per game, fifth in the NFL. Considering they have a super-powered offense, we like them against Tennessee.
Not to mention, Cincinnati is 6-4 against Tennessee in their last ten games. They’ve gone 7-3 ATS against the Titans in those ten games as well. It’s a small spread, but we think they’ll cover and win the game on Saturday. We’d also advise taking the under in this game since there could be a slow start to this one.
Betting Pick: Cincinnati Bengals +3.5 over Tennessee Titans