Pittsburgh Steelers (0-1 SU, 0-1 ATS) vs. Cincinnati Bengals (0-1 SU, 0-0-1 ATS)
NFL Week 2
Date and Time: MNF, September 16th, 2014, 8:40 pm EST
Where: Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio
by Badger, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: Pit +7/CIN -7
Over/Under Total: 41
Bet your Pit/Cinci pick at an online sportsbook that offers Predictem readers a special 100% bonus up to $500 and a free half point every time you bet your (2) favorite NFL and college football teams: GTBets.
With all four teams from the AFC North suffering a loss in their season openers last week, the inter-divisional tilt between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cincinnati Bengals in Paul Brown Stadium on Monday Night Football suddenly has a little more urgency to it now.
Pittsburgh laid perhaps the biggest pile of any NFL team in their opener last Sunday, dropping a, 16-9, loss at the hands of the Tennessee Titans at home in Heinz Field. What makes the Steelersí 195 total yards, five sacks allowed and two turnovers performance on offense even worse is that they lost starting center Maurkice Pouncey to a torn knee in the loss. Now what was the Steelers weak link, their offensive line, has a huge gapping hole in the middle of it.
The Bengals were in a defensive fistfight with the Chicago Bears last weekend, but two Andy Dalton interceptions and not enough late fourth-quarter magic cost them a chance at the win, going down 24-21. If thereís anything the Bengals should hang their heads about in the opener it would be the defense, which didnít play bad, but also only created one turnover and got zero sacks and limited pressure on a sketchy Bears offensive line.
Oddsmakers have to set the opening point spreads based on public perception sometimes, and right now the public is breaking their ankles jumping off the Steelers bandwagon. As a result this usually tough AFC North matchup opened with the Bengals as surprisingly high 7-point favorites at home, and most of the early money is balanced so the number has really only moved the hook in either direction (-6.5 or -7.5) depending on how much juice youíre willing to pay to move the number.
The over/under total opened at 41 and has held firm in the early part of the week.
Ben Roethlisberger is a tough dude, but the way he was battered around by the Titans cannot become a regular scene, and with Pouncey out now so many people have their doubts. Just 32 yards on 15 carries is not Steelers football, I donít care what era youíre from, but with LaRod Stephens-Howling joining rookie LeíVeon Bell on the injured list, Pittsburgh may just have to let Big Ben chuck it around the yard on Monday in order to have any hopes of moving the ball.
BET ON GAMES AFTER THEY START (EVERY GAME!) USING THE LIVE BETTING FEATURE AT ONE OF THE WEB'S BIGGEST BETTING SITES: BOOKMAKER
Cincinnati will be playing in their home opener, so I expect a little more spark out of the defense, especially in primetime on ESPN. Dalton and the offense will have to get the run game established against a Steelers defense that really answered the bell last week against the Titans running game (Titans had 42 attempts, 2.6 ypc), so it may come down to Dalton throwing bombs again to A.J. Green in order for the Bengals to move the chains consistently.
Both teams won on the road in this series last year, with Pittsburgh pulling off a, 24-17, win in Paul Brown Stadium in October. Pittsburgh was actually on a pretty nice ATS run against the Bengals, going 5-0 ATS in a row, and 11-0-1 ATS in their last 12 meetings until they lost to the Bengals SU last December as 3-point favorites.
The under has also been a solid bet in this annual AFC North series, cashing three in a row, five of the last seven (5-2 in L7) in the series overall. However, the few times it has gone over it always seems to go over in Cincinnati, since the over is 4-1 in the last five at Paul Brown Stadium.
Badger's Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I donít like betting on teams with injuries, thereís too many unknowns. Pittsburgh looked so horrible last week that I don't believe they'll be able to rebound in short order so I'm betting the Bengals minus the points.
Editor's Picks - Each week our in house pro's tackle the week's card and make predictions on the week's games ATS! Best bets, top plays, premium selections, etc. FREE!
Expert NFL Picks - Free premium plays from the "real" expert football handicappers from around the web. Don't fall for second rate picks from ESPN, the NFL Network, Hank Goldberg or the screaming touts on TV.
Underdog of the Week Pick - We forecast the loudest barking dog of the week. Expect a 60% winning percentage with these plays.
Favorite of the Week Play - We examine "the chalk" and determine the safest bet in which who you should lay the points with. Forecasting winning favorites long term isn't easy, but we've had some pretty good luck with it over the years.
Line Movement Plays - We report all the major line moves from the gridiron and forecast whether it's public money or sharp action causing the move. Who will cover the spread this week? Our line move plays!
NFL Consensus Picks - See what the general public is betting on. We use this info to fade the public to the tune of big profits over the course of the season.
NFL Trends - Don't ever let anybody tell you that the trend is your friend. These picks make great fades which is exactly what we do with them.
Monday Night Football Picks - The ultimate bailout play. Our MNF picks are golden and have hit 62% or better 3 out of the past 4 years. (Last season was a disaster!) Did we mention that their FREE?
Superbowl Predictions - Our take before the season on who we think will win Superbowl XLVIII. We'll update with a final pick based on the actual remaining teams a week prior to the big game at MetLife Stadium on February 2nd, 2014.
Super Bowl Picks - Everybody here in the Predictem office takes their best preseason shot at predicting the winner Superbowl 48. Pride is on the line here! Oh, and LOOT too!
5Dimes - Bet your NFL football picks at -105 odds every day of the week! 15 team parlays! 20 point teasers! Pleasers and huge point buying opportunities as well!
Bovada - Tired of deposit hassles? Bet on football using your credit card at a sportsbook where your Visa CAN and WILL work for deposits!
Sportsbook - Get a 25% signup bonus on deposits of $200 or more (up to $250 in bonus money). Your credit card WILL work here!
GTBets - You get to select 2 NFL teams and get a FREE half point every time you bet them! Offers a generous 100% bonus! One of the best at accepting credit cards for deposits too!
Football Bets - We explain all the different types of wagers that you can place on an NFL game and give advice on which ones good and which are sucker bets. We also explore the value of betting at reduce odds.
Superbowl Betting - We explain all the different types of wagers you can making including point spread bets, totals, moneylines and prop bets. No need to go to Vegas! You can bet the big game online!
Weekly Fantasy Football - If you drafted a crappy team or the injury bug has bit you and wrecked your season, we've got something really cool to turn you on to that will change the way you play fantasy sports forever!
Famous Football Quotes - From the inspirational to the greatest touchdown calls of all time. We've got them!
Pro Football Hall of Fame - A full list of NFL players who have been inducted into the NFL HOF.
The Spread - Offers free NFL football predictions, matchups, stats including both offensive and defensive and more!
Fantasy Football Sites - Get recommendations on where to find weekly updated player news, depth charts and legit websites that offer the best stat and record tracking for your fantasy football league.