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Bengals Bytes (5/27): Explaining the lack of faith from oddsmakers

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A look at why the oddsmakers are so down on the Bengals heading into the 2018 NFL season.

NFL: Detroit Lions at Cincinnati Bengals David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Why Vegas ties Bengals for longest shot to win Super Bowl
The oddsmakers in Las Vegas don’t give the Bengals much of a chance to win the Super Bowl in 2018. Why is that?
“Cincinnati is a team that doesn’t garner much public action like the larger market teams, so there’s no need to falsely shorten their price,” said Mason Rebell, of Betonline.ag, which project the Bengals to 6.5 wins. “Additionally, there’s not a lick of positive sentiment from sharp bettors and oddsmakers alike when it comes to Marvin Lewis, and there hasn’t been for years.”

Hobson's Choice: receivers on the mind
What is in store for Ryan Hewitt? Is Jordan Willis primed to take over the starting defensive end role in place of Michael Johnson? Is Alx Erickson approaching the roster bubble?

Man busted for drugs at home owned by Bengals cornerback
An Ohio home owned by a Cincinnati Bengals player has been searched and a man living there arrested and charged with marijuana trafficking. Kirkpatrick purchased a home in Cincinnati's Indian Hill neighborhood for $1.9 million in June 2017.

Bengals still searching for next Reggie Nelson with rookie Jessie Bates
The Bengals haven't forced turnovers the same since the veteran left. While this is placing heavy hopes on a rookie, Bates showed a knack for being around the football in college and enters one of the better environments a rookie safety could ask for this year.

AFC North Bytes

Pittsburgh Steelers bet big on James Conner after humbling rookie year
James Conner's inspirational story was celebrated, but on the field he struggled like many rookies. In Year 2, he knows he has "a lot to prove." Gaining 144 yards on 32 carries last season was enough to showcase Conner's potential, but a Week 15 medial collateral ligament tear cut his production short.

Ravens complete first week of OTA’s - Baltimore Beatdown
The first week of OTA’s for the Baltimore Ravens are in the books. Although these practices were non-contact, there were several questions raised. Does Robert Griffin III have a better chance to make the roster than most anticipated?

Are the Browns ready to pass the Bengals as Ohio's best NFL team?
Doug Lesmerises is joined by Bengals writer Jim Owczarski of cincinnati.com to break down the Bengals. The Bengals have won seven straight over the Browns dating back to November 2014 and have won 15 of the last 19 in the series.

Random Bytes

Avril: Seahawks began to question Carroll after SB XLIX
If not for Malcolm Butler's history-altering interception that swung Super Bowl XLIX in New England's direction, ex-Seahawks DE Cliff Avril believes his ring finger wouldn't be so lonesome. The shame is that one play involving manifold factors beyond Carroll's control will end up shaping the legacy that defines his Seattle career.

New deals, rookie QBs, trades? Answers to NFL's big questions
Will OBJ get a new deal? Where will Dez Bryant sign? Which rookie quarterback will be the first to start? Will injured stars be healthy when the season starts? Which stars will get extensions?

Fired Giants equipment staffers “did not see this coming” – ProFootballTalk
Less than two weeks after settling a four-year-old lawsuit arising from allegations of fraudulent memorabilia, the Giants fired three members of their equipment staff. Two of them were surprised. Via Ryan Dunleavy of NJ.

NFL defensive line rankings: Jaguars, Eagles, Rams top the list
Gregg Rosenthal ranks the top defensive lines in the NFL today. Which overall unit holds the No. 1 spot? Who boasts the best pass-rushing tandem? Which teams just missed the cut? The Eagles might still boast the deepest D-line in football, but this is far from the same group that helped win a Super Bowl.