Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Cincinnati Bengals Pick 9/30/21
Jacksonville Jaguars (0-3 SU, 0-3 ATS) vs. Cincinnati Bengals (2-1 SU, 2-1 ATS)
Week 4 NFL
Date/Time: Thursday Night Football, September 30, 2021 at 8:20PM EDT
Where: Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio
TV: NFL Network
Point Spread: JAC+7.5/CIN -7.5 (Bovada - Awesome live betting! 50% Bonus! Rebates on ALL bets!)
Over/Under Total: 45.5
The Jacksonville Jaguars take on the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on Thursday Night Football in week 4 AFC action. It’s an interesting battle, with both of the last two number-one picks at quarterback duking it out with Cincinnati’s Joe Burrow and Jacksonville’s Trevor Lawrence. On Thursday, the Bengals moved to 2-1 with a really impressive 24-10 win over the Steelers. Jacksonville, however, has yet to see their recipe take hold, losing to Arizona, 31-19, in a game where they looked poised to score the upset before totally collapsing. They’ve yet to win or cover a spread through three games this season. Who can get the job done in Cincy this week and help us get our week off to a good start?
On one hand, you have a young Cincinnati offense that has begun to see their recipe manifest in a good way. Burrow has looked pretty good this season, and even though his rookie season ended in injury, he seems to have still benefitted from getting that experience under his belt. On the other sideline is a major talent in Trevor Lawrence, but a QB who is on a team that has really bottomed out in terms of personnel, thus handcuffing his progress. His line isn’t the worst in the league, and he has talent with guys like James Robinson, DJ Chark, Laviska Shenault, and Marvin Jones, but any, some, or all of these guys are prone to disappear without much notice on a given day.
With youth comes mistakes, and on Sunday, Lawrence threw a pick-six that led to the go-ahead score for Arizona in a game where they were actually doing well. Now maybe how well they were doing could translate better against a team like the Bengals, and they can find a way not to collapse, but the offense is mistake-prone. With a TD coming from a blocked FG that got run back, they only managed two scores against an Arizona “D” that wasn’t at their best.
On the other hand, we see roles forming on the Bengals, with rookie Ja’Marr Chase catching two TDs on Sunday to further establish himself as the most productive rookie receiver in this year’s class. With Tyler Boyd, Joe Mixon, and others, it’s an offense that is starting to form an identity. But alas, they are also a work-in-progress, and with that comes uneven play from the still-developing Burrow and all the different foibles that emanate from having a bottom-third offensive line. They’re just a little further along in their development as a team than the Jags.
Jacksonville Getting Over the Hump?
It feels weird to say that after they fell apart in a game where if they won, it would have put a lot of wind in their sails. The truth is that for a lot of the game, we saw a Jacksonville O-line that was keeping Lawrence protected and springing some nice runs from Robinson. Marvin Jones might be a dicey number-one receiver, but he and Lawrence are creating a nice chemistry. Along with Chark and Shenault, he at least has the semblance of a solid receiver crew, and we saw it coming together at times on Sunday. The four turnovers and the pick-six was a hurdle they couldn’t overcome, but at least they had some success to undermine. In other words, with fewer mistakes, one can envision things coming together a little bit.
There will likely be a time in the not-so-distant future where the value will be gone on Trevor Lawrence. He won’t be getting points against teams like Cincy. And after a game where they were knocking on the door, the next progression is seeing things work against the Bengals. They’re due—if not for a win, then at least a cover. A kid like Lawrence, who rarely lost a game growing up, is going to get one sooner or later. This isn’t a 1-15 team. They’re not good, but this is a spot where they might be more in their wheelhouse after suffering against better teams like Denver and Arizona.
The Jacksonville defense lost a lot of their power over the last several seasons. There has been a lot of reshuffling, with some things working out and others not. But you’re starting to see some of the old playmaking flair start to pop up. And through three games, even with other areas of their defense not thriving and offensive support being scant, they’ve been pretty tough against the run. Not that a sustainable ground game is really Cincinnati’s bread-and-butter, but if they can stifle Mixon and render the Cincinnati offense more one-dimensional, it would give them an edge.
Take the Points on the Road Dog
Jacksonville is the type of dicey proposition where one might not feel that comfortable heading into a game. Mistakes, flat play, or any of their numerous deficiencies surfacing could all completely undermine the pick. In addition, you have a Bengals team that has started to poke their heads out of the sand following a prolonged funk where you would expect them to have a lot of motivation. At home, with a chance to go to 3-1, this is not a spot to catch them slacking. I just think that some of the progress we saw last Sunday will be seen through to a greater extent on Thursday, aos the Jags get out of Cincy with the cover. I’ll take Jacksonville.
Loot’s Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I’m betting on the Jacksonville Jaguars plus 7.5 points. Rough week? Need to re-deposit at your book and you’re potentially receiving NOTHING for doing so? Consider this instead –> Deposit $100 to $1000 and receive a dollar for dollar matching 100% real cash bonus at Betnow Sportsbook! It’s one of the best sportsbook bonuses you’ll ever see!
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