Featured Video from Scott Reichel
Where: Paul Brown Stadium
When: Sunday, December 15, 2019, 1:00 pm ET
We have a non-divisional AFC matchup to discuss when the New England Patriots meet the Cincinnati Bengals for an afternoon of tackle football. The Patriots enter this game in first place in the AFC East and are hoping to end a two-game losing streak. Cincinnati is 1-12 this season and last in the AFC North and coming off a 27-19 road loss to the Cleveland Browns.
Patriots Two Game Losing StreakNew England enters this matchup with the Bengals with a record of 10-3 and is first in the AFC East with a one-game lead over the Buffalo Bills. The Patriots suffered a road loss to the Houston Texans and a Week 14 home loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, and a victory on Sunday would force Buffalo to keep up with them in the standings. New England closes the season with Buffalo and Miami at home, and winning this game would probably give the Patriots the AFC East title.
Cincinnati allows 156.7 rushing yards per game and running Sony Michel leads the Patriots with 653 yards along with six touchdowns plus an additional 75 receiving yards. James White has rushed for 241 yards with one touchdown along with 539 receiving yards and three touchdowns. Rex Burkhead might see some work, and he’s rushed for 181 yards, one touchdown plus an additional 190 receiving yards this season.
The Bengals allow 253 passing yards per game, and New England will look to veteran quarterback Tom Brady to lead the charge. Brady has thrown for 3437 yards with 19 scoring strikes along with seven interceptions. Brady has also thrown interceptions in his last two games and has rushed for an additional 32 yards with three touchdowns.
Julian Edelman leads New England with 90 receptions for 1010 yards and six touchdowns this season. Edelman is listed as questionable for this tilt and missed Wednesday’s practice. Phillip Dorsett II has 28 receptions for 347 yards with five touchdowns this season and is third on the team with 50 targets. Rookie wideout Jakobi Meyers has 19 targets over the past three games, and he could play a significant role on Sunday. Mohamed Sanu is another receiver who could play a role but is listed as questionable for Sunday.
Bengals Tough SeasonCincinnati has struggled this season and has one win against 12 losses this season. The injury to A.J. Green was huge but he might make a return this Sunday. The Bengals score just 15.8 points per game and have scored the second-fewest points in the National Football League this season. They have has quarterback controversies and all sorts of mess, but a victory over the Patriots on Sunday would be like winning a Super Bowl for the Bengals.
The Patriots allow 193.5 passing yards per game and Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton will have to have a monster game to defeat New England. He’s thrown for 2757 yards with ten touchdowns alongside nine interceptions with an additional 62 rushing yards with three touchdowns this season.
Tyler Boyd leads the Bengals with 73 receptions for 833 yards along with three touchdowns and a team-high 119 targets. Auden Tate is second on the team in receiving and has been placed on injured reserve with a knee injury. Alex Ericson is third on the team with 60 targets and has caught 35 balls for 452 yards this season. Tight end Tyler Eifert has 34 receptions for 301 yards and a pair of touchdowns this season for the Bengals.
New England allows 93 rushing yards per game and running back Joe Mixon is coming off a 146-yard rushing game against the Cleveland Browns. Mixon has rushed for 789 yards with three touchdowns plus an additional 230 receiving yards with three touchdowns this season.
- Bengals are 2-10 ATS in their last 12 home games.
- Bengals are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games as a home underdog.
The top supporting trends for this game found on Covers.com, are
- Patriots are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a losing home record.
- Patriots are 21-5 ATS vs. a team with a losing record.
- Patriots are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games in Week 15.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
It’s hard not to like the Patriots in this game. The Bengals already have enough trouble scoring points, and now they are up against one of the best defenses in the National Football League. That is going to be a difficult thing for the Bengals offense. The Cincinnati defense isn’t that bad, and while New England has its difficulties at times scoring the football, they shouldn’t have that much trouble covering the 9.5 points. I will lay the wood and play the Patriots to cover the spread in this contest.
Prediction: Patriots -9.5
Full-Game Total Pick
I don’t see a lot of points scored in this one, and 40.5 points might be too high. Neither offense in this matchup is imposing, and I think the defenses are the best thing about these teams. It will be clear and cold in Cincinnati on Sunday, so the weather shouldn’t be much of a factor. I see two sputtering offenses up against one tremendous and one average defense and a 21-7 victory for the New England Patriots. I will play UNDER 40.5 points in this matchup.
Prediction: Under 40.5