Indianapolis Colts vs. Cincinnati Bengals Point Spread – Pick Against the Spread

Note: If you’re looking for the 2014 Wildcard matchup between these two teams, please go here: Cincinnati Bengals vs. Indianapolis Colts Pick.

Indianapolis Colts (8-4 SU, 7-5 ATS) vs. Cincinnati Bengals (8-4 SU, 7-4-1 ATS)
NFL Week 14
Date and Time: Sunday, December 8, 1:00pm
Where: Paul Brown Stadium - Cincinnati, Ohio
TV: CBS
by Bob, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com

Point Spread: IND +6/CIN -6
Over/Under Total: 43

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This Sunday, we have an AFC showdown between two teams that have postseason
aspirations, when the Indianapolis Colts travel east to
take on the Cincinnati Bengals. Both teams enter this game
at 8-4 overall, and both teams are also sitting in first place in their
respective divisions. Indy sits atop the AFC South while Cincy is the lead
dog in the AFC North. The line opens with the Bengals favored by six points
at home. This line may seem a little large, but in Paul Brown Stadium, the
Bengals have a perfect 5-0 record. The total points open up at 43 points
which seems to be a tad low in my opinion. This will be a great game, and
could be a preview of a playoff matchup and I could see this game going
either way.

Cincinnati has played well this season, especially at home. They are 5-0 on home soil and that includes wins over the Patriots, Packers, and Jets. Much of the Bengals success both on the road and at home has been in part of their defense. They rank in the top ten in both passing and rushing defense and are one of the very few teams that can boast that strong of a defense. Many teams across the league excel in one category while the other they may rank a little lower. Don’t get me wrong, any team that ranks top ten in any defensive stat is playing great D, but the Bengals are on a whole other level. Along with their great defense, they also play pretty decent offense. Quarterback, Andy Dalton has thrown for over 3,100 yards already this season with 22 touchdown tosses. This has the Cincy passing game on the verge of the NFLs top ten. Much of Dalton’s success can be attributed to the stud wide receiver, AJ Green, but regardless, Dalton has played pretty well overall. I like this Cincinnati team and I believe the right draw in the post season could lead to them making a pretty deep run. This game to me is still a little odd. You are facing another AFC playoff bound team, and are favored by nearly a TD…I just don’t get it. However, if the Bengals plan on covering and winning, then its simple: D UP. The Bengals have lived and died by their defense this season. The loss of Geno Atkins many thought would devastate the D Line, but really they haven’t missed a beat. Cincy is still playing stud defense and I don’t see that stopping Sunday.

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The Colts are a great story. Many thought it would take years before they moved on from the Peyton Manning era, but they are already making a post season run, and have one of the best quarterbacks in the league. Andrew Luck has a lot to learn, and is still developing as an NFL QB, but lets be real….the kid is legit. My prediction is that in the next three to five seasons, he will be a top five NFL QB. The Colts have been pretty balanced this season going 4-2 at both home and on the road. The one inconsistency however are the teams they are beating and losing to. They upset the Denver Broncos in a prime time matchup, but then get destroyed by the Rams, and then again by the Cardinals. Don’t get me wrong, Indianapolis is a good team, but they are still growing as a unit and I believe their best days are still a year or so away, but these guys can play with anyone on any given Sunday (or Monday or Thursday). In order to go on the road and grab a win in Cincinnati, or at least cover the six points, offense is key. The Colts must score points. They cannot pull another Arizona or St Louis let down. Andrew Luck needs to march these guys up and down the field and in my opinion 23 is the key. 23 points for the Colts and I don’t see how Cincy will be able to cover this spread.

Bob’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Like I said, you don’t see many 1st place matchups in the NFL when one team is nearly favored by a whole touchdown. Most of these games are usually set at 3 or so points. Is this a trap to get us to bet on the Colts only to see them get manhandled? It would appear that way, but six points to me is just too many. The action is about even on this game with 51% of the money on Cincy, so there is no contrarian play here. I am going on gut. I think the Colts reach that magic score of 23. Like I said, if they get 23, I don’t see the Bengals scoring enough to cover six. Do I think the Colts win this game? No. But I do like it to be a competitive preview of a potential AFC playoff game. I like the total points to soar over and I like the Bengals to hold on and narrowly escape this game by a score of 28-23. PICK THE OVER AND THE COLTS +6