Bengals -4.5 over Jets
1:00 PM EST
Betting Line Provider: BetOnline
This week is do or die for the defending AFC Champions who absolutely cannot afford to start the season 0-3 if they have any hopes of making another run in the playoffs this year. However, despite the ugly start, there is no panic out of the Bengals locker room — from either the players or the coaches. In an interview earlier this week defensive end Sam Hubbard had this to say: “you cant let the 0-2 start affect you. People look at you and your demeanor, how you handle adversity. All you can do is get back to work. And we’re excited to get back to work.” Joe Burrow, when questioned about team morale during his usual Wednesday press conference earlier this morning: “we’re not panicking. We’re two games in, and we’ve got 15 games left. Let’s all just take a deep breath and relax, we’re going to be fine. I’m not worried about it.” Head coach Zac Taylor offered similar optimism: “I know that we’re going to be a really good football team.”
Last year the Bengals had their mid-season surge where they won four out of five games which was culminated by an extremely satisfying 41-17 blowout victory over their divisional rival Ravens. They had another big divisional game on tap the following week against the Browns and sandwiched in between was a road game against the lowly Jets. It was a classic let down spot and unsurprisingly the Bengals came in totally flat (much like they did against Dallas last week) and lost outright as 12 point road favorites. Coming into this game at 0-2, a literal ‘do or die’ game, I have zero worry about Cincinnati being unfocused or taking the Jets lightly. Thanks to the Bengals outright loss against Dallas and the Jets fluke win over Cleveland last week, we are getting a real bargain price on the Bengals in this matchup, the definition of a true ‘buy low’ spot.Outside of the final flukey two minutes last week, the Browns dominated the Jets on both sides of the ball and the Bengals will pick up right where they left off. Nick Chubb trampled the Jets for three touchdowns, so Joe Mixon figures to have a big day. The Bengals offensive issues have stemmed from their poor offensive line play — Burrow has been sacked a league high 13 times already — but the Jets do not have anyone nearly as skilled as T.J. Watt or Micah Parsons coming off the edge. Jacoby Brissett who is awful had an 80% completion percentage last week against the Jets so the far superior Burrow who will actually finally have more than two seconds in the pocket will have plenty of time to pick apart the Jets susceptible secondary with his plethora of skilled offensive weapons.
Joe Flacco turned back the clock last week throwing for four touchdowns and zero interceptions but I’d lay -1000 odds on an ‘under 4 TDs and over 0 INT’s’ parlay in this game. The Bengals offense has had it’s issues, but the defense has looked every bit as sharp as last year’s Super Bowl caliber unit. The Jets have not been a team who has handled success well during Robert Saleh’s tenure. They won a grand total of four games last season and followed all four of those wins up with non-competitive losses in the next game — losing those games by a combined 40 points. I look for the Bengals to come out inspired on both sides of the ball and a similar double digit beat down of the fat and happy Jets coming off a win would not surprise me. Look for the Bengals to get a season saving win and to do so in resounding fashion. Bengals -4.5