Miami Dolphins (3-3 SU, 4-2 ATS) vs. Cincinnati Bengals (2-4 SU, 2-4 ATS), Week 8 NFL, 1:00 p.m. EST, Sunday, October 31, 2010, Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio. TV: CBS
by Ryno of Predictem.com
Betting Odds: Mia +1.5/CIN -1.5
Over/Under Total: 43.5
Coming into the season, there was a lot of talk about the Cincinnati Bengals and the talent they have on their roster. With the addition of Terrell Owens at wide receiver to play alongside Chad Ochocinco, the Bengals were supposed to have a dominant offense that would carry them to prominence. But instead the Bengals have started the season by losing four of their first six games. If they want to make the playoffs now, they will have to go on a huge run. And that starts with a win at home against the Miami Dolphins on Sunday afternoon.
All three of the Dolphins’ wins this year are by five points or less. They started the season 2-0 with a 15-10 win at Buffalo and a 14-10 win at Minnesota. After losing at home to division rivals Jets and Patriots, the Dolphins bounced back after their bye week with a 23-20 win at Green Bay. Then, last week, they lost by a mere point at home to the Steelers, 23-22. So the Dolphins are 3-0 this season on the road and 0-3 at home.
In the loss last week to the Steelers, the Dolphins scored just one touchdown in the game. They had to settle for five field goals. And they couldn’t stop the big passing plays by the Steelers, who scored both of their touchdowns outside of the red zone, including a 53-yard touchdown pass from Ben Roethlisberger to Mike Wallace in the second quarter. The Dolphins cut the lead to 17-16 late in the second quarter on a 26-yard touchdown pass from Chad Henne to Davone Bess. But both teams had just two field goals in the second half, as the Steelers held on for the narrow victory.
Henne was 23-for-36 passing for 257 yards and a touchdown. The Dolphins totaled just 54 rushing yards, including only 14 yards on nine carries by Ronnie Brown. But the Dolphins also held Rashard Mendenhall to 37 rushing yards on 15 carries, and 58 rushing yards by the Steelers as a team. Three different Dolphins receivers had at least five catches and at least 57 yards – Bess, Brandon Marshall and Brian Hartline.
The Bengals were doing okay with a 2-1 record after back-to-back wins over the Ravens and Panthers. But since then, they’ve lost three straight games, all by seven points or less, to the Browns, Buccaneers and Falcons.
In last week’s 39-32 loss to the Falcons in Atlanta, it was an absolute shootout. The Bengals trailed 24-3 at the half and it seemed that they were out of the game but they scored three touchdowns and a field goal in the third quarter to take a 25-24 lead. All in a span of two minutes and 23 seconds, Carson Palmer threw a 19-yard touchdown pass to Terrell Owens, then Palmer threw a 64-yard touchdown pass to Jordan Shipley, and after that Adam Jones recovered a Roddy White fumble and took it back 59 yards into the end zone. But in the fourth quarter, the Falcons recovered with a touchdown pass from Matt Ryan to White and then a touchdown run by Turner. Ochocinco caught a touchdown pass in the final two minutes, but the Falcons held on for the win.
Palmer had one of the better games in his career with 412 passing yards and three touchdowns while completing 36-of-50 passes. Cedric Benson had 20 carries for 70 yards. Shipley had six catches for 131 yards and a touchdown, Ochocinco had 10 catches for 108 yards and a touchdown, and Owens had nine catches for 88 yards and a touchdown.
The Dolphins are 5-0 ATS in their last five road games, 9-1 ATS in their last 10 games as an underdog, and 13-3 ATS in their last 16 games as a road underdog. The Bengals are 1-5 ATS in their last six games following an ATS loss and 1-5 ATS in their last six home games. The under is 10-2 in the Dolphins’ last 12 games as a road underdog. The under is 9-2 in the Bengals’ last 11 games as a home favorite.
Ryno’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: The Bengals are due to start playing some good football. I think they win this game by a touchdown!