Monday Night NFL Preview – Cincinnati Bengals at Denver Broncos 12/28
For the Denver Broncos, there is a certain sense of urgency as they approach the Monday night meeting against the Cincinnati Bengals, because they have clinched absolutely nothing in the AFC. Because of the surge put forward by the Kansas City Chiefs, it is conceivable that Denver could lose the AFC West title, and then there are the New York Jets and Pittsburgh Steelers to contend with in the wild-card race. So the best thing they can do is win, and there might even be a first-round playoff bye in it for them. Game time is 8:30 PM ET at Sports Authority Field, and of course, BetAnySports customers have the opportunity, even after the game kicks off, to challenge the football odds through the state-of-the-art software available from Live Betting Extra.
Both of these teams are using different quarterbacks than the ones they started the season with. For the Bengals, AJ McCarron, the former Alabama signal-caller, is making his second NFL start in place of Andy Dalton, who is sitting out with a thumb injury. McCarron did not light the San Francisco 49ers on fire last week, although he was a solid 15-21 for 192 yards. Even though San Francisco has a pretty serviceable stop unit, that was not a real indication of what McCarron can do, because his team was gifted with four turnovers. If the Bengals want to make something happen, McCarron needs to make a productive connection with AJ Green, who has 1206 receiving yards on the season. Last week Green was targeted only three times. With Tyler Eifert out with a concussion, that is extremely important.
In the Monday night NFL betting odds posted on this game by the people at BetAnySports, Denver is the favorite:
The Broncos, of course, go with Brock Osweiler, who is making his sixth start in place of Peyton Manning, who now finds himself at the center of controversy due to a report that he used performance-enhancing substances while recovering from injury in Indianapolis. For Osweiler, it’s been a tale of two halves – he has been 73% accurate in the first half, and only 49% in the second half. Last week against the Steelers, he had only two completions after halftime, and Denver squandered a 27-10 lead. So it’s rather simple to see what the Broncos’ challenge is going to be here.
At the same time, Cincinnati, with their young, inexperienced quarterback, is likely to find some difficulty moving the ball through the air or on the ground. As BetAnySports patrons are well aware, Denver has, on balance, the top defense in the league. They have allowed a microscopic 3.2 yards per rushing attempt, and they’ve been getting better as the season has progressed – opponents have only had 268 total rushing yards against them in the last five games. And when you can limit the opposition to just 5.6 yards per passing attempt, you are keeping big plays off the table.
Let’s not lose sight of the fact that Cincinnati has an outstanding defense as well. In fact, they have surrendered only 17.6 points per game, which is the lowest figure in the league. However, they might be a tad vulnerable to a good rushing attack, and the Broncos would like to get back to the point they were in Osweiler’s first two starts, when they totaled 349 yards on the ground.
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