Bengals vs. Jaguars Pick
According to oddsmakers at Bovada.lv, Jacksonville is favored at home in this game, as the Jaguars are getting odds of -5.5 points against the Bengals. The over/under total for the contest has been set at 39 points. Cincinnati has won four straight meetings in this series, and the Bengals are 3-0-2 against the spread in the last five meetings. The public betting in this one has Jacksonville getting 59 percent of the wagers at home. Today’s games takes place from EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Florida. The contest will air live on CBS.
The Jaguars are coming off their bye week, but they earned a 27-0 win at Indy prior to that. The Jags are 4-3 on the season, but they have yet to win back-to-back games. Jacksonville is 4-3 against the spread, covering in all of their wins. The Jags are averaging 26.1 points and 368.7 yards per game on offense this year. They have one of the best rushing attacks in the league thanks to rookie Leonard Fournette, who has 596 yards and six touchdowns. He missed the last game due to injury but is expected to play today. Blake Bortles has thrown for 1,398 yards and nine touchdowns, but also has five interceptions. Marqise Lee is the leading receiver with 24 catches for 363 yards. Defensively, Jacksonville is holding opponents to just 15.7 points and 329.1 yards per game. The Jags have 33 sacks as a team this season. Calais Campbell has been a monster in the pass rush, racking up 10 sacks while Yannick Ngakoue has added 6.5.
Cincinnati is coming off a 24-23 win at home over Indianapolis last week to win its third in four. The Bengals are now 3-4 on the season and 3-4 against the spread. Cincy is 2-1 ATS on the road this season. Cincinnati hasn’t had much offensive flow in 2017, averaging just 17.4 points and 307.4 yards per game. Their run game is among the worst in the league, posting just 78.4 yards per game. Rookie Joe Mixon is emerging as the feature back. He has 253 yards and a score this year. Andy Dalton has thrown for 1,603 yards in 2017, but has eight interceptions and has been sacked 22 times to go with his 11 touchdowns. A.J. Green continues to be a force, catching 38 passes for 572 yards and four touchdowns. Defensively, Cincinnati is holding up. The Bengals are allowing just 19.3 points and 313.1 yards per contest. Cincy has 22 sacks as a defense with Geno Atkins leading the way with five.
This game reeks of a defensive battle, which means it should be a close game. The Jaguars have been very Jekyll and Hyde this season and you can’t trust them to turn in solid performances back-to-back. Given their inconsistency, I am going to take the Bengals with the points. Cincinnati still has a defense that can compete against anyone. Blake Bortles hasn’t shown he can be trusted yet and Leonard Forunette is likely to face plenty of resistance from that Cincinnati defensive front.
NFL WEEK 9 PREDICTION: CINCINNATI BENGALS +5.5