Seattle Seahawks (2-2 SU, 1-3 ATS) vs. Cincinnati Bengals (4-0 SU, 4-0 ATS)
NFL Week 5
Date/Time: October 11, 2015 1:00PM EST
Where: Paul Brown Stadium
by WILSON, NFL Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: SEA +3/CIN -3
Over/Under Total: 44
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The Seattle Seahawks go on the road this week to play a red hot Cincinnati Bengals team who are undefeated with a 4-0 start thus far for the fourth time in franchise historythe other 4-0 starts were `05, `88, and `75. Seattle, meanwhile, comes into this week at 2-2 which quite honestly should be 1-3 but a no-call on a batted football out of the end zone late in the MNF win over Detroit 13-10 boosted the Hawks to a .500 record. Detroit played well enough to win but just caught a bad breakit seems to happen to teams in Seattle on Monday nights! (Green Bay 2012). The Bengals have an excellent opportunity to go 5-0 and knock off the Seahawks at home. It all depends on which Seattle team shows upthe ugly sputtering offense or the high flying offense.
Seattles defense has been better with the return of all-Pro Kam Chancellor who literally saved the Seahawks from falling to 1-3 when he popped the ball out of a would-be TD scoring Calvin Johnsons hands. However, the Seahawks offense will need to step it up this week. The main issue, outside of Marshawn Lynch being out last week (Hamstring) is the Hawks O-line. Seattles QB Russell Wilson was hit hard several times, fumbled twice, and took 3 sacks. This is a huge concern in the Hawks offensive approach. Russell Wilson got away with scrambling for yards and throwing against the grain a few times last week but he cannot live off of this type of playits going catch up with them sooner rather than later. Guys have to block better and allow Wilson to operate longer out of the pocket or the Hawks will get beat by the Bengals. I still believe Seattle is not using Jimmy Graham enough in their schemes. Graham has to be involved more to open up the full arsenal of Seattle.
If youre a Bengals fan you are loving this start to the season especially behind the play of QB Andy Dalton. Dalton has been just terrific this season and continues to play at a high level as evident from his QB rating last week. More importantly or impressive has been Daltons to stay calm and pass on playwhich he has done in all four regular season contests. Hes definitely faced harsh critics the past few years with not being able to win a playoff game but this might be the breakout yearyes it is early still but man, Dalton is playing extremely well. He went 17 of 24 for 321 yards against the Chiefs to cap off the Bengals fourth win 36-21.
Seattle has struggled on the road at times. Offensively the Hawks have no rhythm and Russell Wilson is going to get hurt if his O-line doesnt protect himhe has taken way too many hits this year already. The injury report for Seattle could be a deciding factor as well in this contest. Notable players on the list are RB Marshawn Lynch (questionable) RB Fred Jackson (probable) TE Luke Wilson (probable) and WR Paul Richardson (out). The Bengals injury report is CB Adam Jones (probable) and SS George IIoka (day-to-day). Seattle is 0-2 on the road and the Bengals are undefeated at home and 4-0 ATS while the Hawks are 1-3 ATS.
On paper these teams matchup well but Cincinnati will have the edge at home and on offensethe Hawks D will need to pressure Dalton all day but even that hasnt stopped the Bengals QB this season. Dalton has rallied from behind twice already to win games and hes rebounded from negative series to show he is capable of taking his team down field at any time. The Bengals average 296 yards passing per game to Seattles 244 and both teams average 128 yards on the ground. Cincinnati scores 30.2 ppg to Seattles 21.8. Defensively the Hawks hold teams to 17.8 and the Bengals allow 19.2 ppg.
This is a pivotal game for Seattle after barely winning on a no-call Monday night over the Lions. The Hawks are at .500 coming into this contest and will look forward to getting above the line. Keys to the game for Seattle will be better O-line play, more consistency on offense, period! Keys for Cincinnatikeep doing what has worked.
Weather forecast for game day is sunny and 75 degrees. I like the Bengals to keep their winning ways. Ill take Cincinnati 31-24 over the Seahawks. Luck to ya.
WILSONs Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Cincinnati covers the three point line.
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