By Charles Jay
The Cincinnati Bengals
are basically down to their last gasp at the moment, and that is something that may impact upon the way they come out of the box against the Philadelphia Eagles
, who are scrambling around to keep their own playoff hopes moving. These two teams will get together at 1 PM ET on Sunday
at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati. AndBetAnySports
customers, who can get reduced juice before the game starts, will have the opportunity to place wagers even after the opening kickoff as they access the software made available though Live Betting Ultra.
The Bengals are winless in the their last four games, and you have to wonder whether it is really too late for them to make any kind of a move at this point. The wild card would seem a rough way to go, but with games upcoming against Pittsburgh and Baltimore, both of whom are 6-5, there still is a chance to win the AFC North. But they would need a better effort against the Ravens in particular than what they showed last week, when they lost 19-14 and got frustrated at the end as Baltimore held all the Cincinnati special teams players intentionally while their punter ran out the clock.
The Eagles started out the season with a 3-0 record, but it has hardly been smooth sailing since. Carson Wentz has done a credible job at quarterback, considering the circumstances under which he got the job. Wentz was supposed to sit for a while as Sam Bradford played, but then Bradford got traded to Minnesota, and Wentz, who had sat out much of training camp with a rib injury, became the guy. He started quickly but has four TD passes and six interceptions over his last seven games.
In the NFL betting odds that have been posted on this game by the people at BetAnySports
, the Bengals are favored at home:
Cincinnati Bengals -2
Philadelphia Eagles +2
Over 41 points -110
Under 41 points -110
The Eagles don’t really have a lot of offensive firepower as it is, but they will be hurting in a sense because once again Ryan Mathews is out with his knee injury. He missed last week’s 27-13 loss to Green Bay, in which Philly failed to take advantage of injury problems on the Packer defense. Darren Sproles has been dealing with a cracked rib as well. And right tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai is out. This causes the Eagles to shuffle around a little up front.
Remember, however, that Philadelphia’s defense has allowed just 19.4 points a game. This is a stop unit that is built on pressure, and as much as Cincinnati believes it can get favorable results by putting a lot of pressure on Wentz, the Eagles might be able to get to Andy Dalton easier. Dalton has been sacked 32 times, which exceeds his 2015 total by a wide margin. BetAnySportspatrons are aware, of course, that he is without AJ Green for this one (hamstring injury), so that makes Brandon Lafell his primary receiver, with a residual effect through the rest of the receiver corps. Giovanni Bernard, the best pass-catcher out of the backfield, is injured too, so they are thankful that they still have tight end Tyler Eifert (21 catches, 312 yards since coming back from surgery).
The Bengals have not been nearly as strong on the ground lately. They had a two-game period where they had 423 yards, but have rushed for just 235 over the last three games. But their defense has shown a little more life since the unit was called out by coordinator Paul Guenther after the trip to London, which resulted in a tie against Washington. After three straight defeats, we expect an effort that is reflective of their level of desperation.
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