Lombardi, Mortensen, Sando and Maiocco Make Their Predictions

Last week, Bengals.com writer Geoff Hobson rounded up ALex Marvez, Mark Klis, Bill Williamson and John Thornton to make their predictions on the Bengals-Broncos game in Denver. All four gave the edge to Denver and all four ended up being correct. This week, Hobson rounded up Mike Lombardi from NFL Network, Chris Mortensen from ESPN, Matt Maiocco, who covers the 49ers for CNSBayArea.com and Mike Sando from ESPN. Who will they give the edge to this week. 

Let's find out.

Lombardi:

"The one thing that worries me about the Bengals is they could be a little light at receiver depending what happens with Jerome Simpson. If Andre Caldwell has to go outside in place of Simpson, that makes it a different dynamic. You have to be able to loosen them up on the outside.

I think Andy Dalton's been fine. I was a little concerned about him after the first game. I think they should have beat Cleveland by more than they did. I don't think Cleveland is as good as most people think, but Dalton has been fine and he'll be better in weeks seven and eight."

Lombardi gives his edge to the Bengals, predicting they'll win 17-13.

Mortensen:

"At first glance I like the Bengals at home, but it's going to be important to see how they play with the distractions of the week. Losing Simpson would be key considering they already lost Shipley.

Two matchups fascinate me. The 49ers were talking about getting either Andy Dalton or Colin Kaepernick at quarterback in the second round. They really liked both and they decided not to trade ahead of Cincinnati. I really like what Dalton is doing."

Mortensen predicts the bengals will win 20-17 saying that the "49ers are still a team in transition."

Sando:

"It comes down to two areas. Can the Bengals offense do anything against the Niners' front seven in the running game, and do the 49ers finally get Gore going on the ground? Gore hasn't had much room in the first two games, although Seattle is better against the run than one might realize."

Sando predicts the 49ers will defeat the Bengals in Cincinnati on Sunday by a score of 23-17.

Maiocco:

"To me the key is two interesting matchups involving ex-49ers. There is (SAM backer) Manny Lawson covering the tight ends and (cornerback) Nate Clements coming up to stop Gore in the running game.

Manny did a nice job here covering receivers. I twas probably his strength. He'll be matched up on Vernon Davis or the other tight end, Delanie Walker. Davis's bread-and-butter with Alex Smith is the seam route, but Dallas took it away and the 49ers ended up isolating Walker on an outside linebacker.

Part of the reason they parted ways with Clements is because at his age it was a question if he can still run with top-flight receivers. But he's one of the best corners I've ever seen coming up to support the run. And with the Niners wanting to establish the run, I expect he'll be flying up to try and stop Gore."

Maiocco predicts the Bengals will win 17-14 saying, "this is a game the Bengals probably and should win at home."

For the first time the football analysts are picking the Bengals to win a football game. They didn't against the Browns and they didn't against the Broncos. Maybe it's Dalton's impressive performance in the second half of the Denver game or the fact that the 49ers aren't very good or maybe it's a combination of both. Either way, I hope that the analysts picking the Bengals transfers to a win on the field on Sunday.

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