The Bengals and Cowboys have both been disappointing since losing their starting quarterbacks, but the oddsmakers and experts are still heavily feeling Dallas to come away with a road victory in this one. With Andy Dalton coming back to town and Bengals head coach Zac Taylor trying to get any victory he can, it should be a fun one to watch.
The Bengals are currently 3.5-point underdogs to the Cowboys at home, according to Bovada. Considering the game is in Cincinnati, it says an incredible amount that a team like the Cowboys are favored by more than a field goal. It is hard argue with it though. The Bengals offense has been looking for answers since Joe Burrow went down, and they haven’t really found any yet. Combine that with Joe Mixon still missing time, and there is a huge uphill battle against even a defense as bad as Dallas’
- Cincinnati is 1-7 straight up in their last eight games.
- The total has gone under in four of Cincinnati’s last five games against Dallas.
- Cincinnati is 5-0-1 against the spread in their last six games at home.
- Cincinnati is 4-1 against the spread in their last five games when playing at home against Dallas.
- Cincinnati is 1-4 SU in their last five games this season.
- Cincinnati is 0-7-1 SU in their last eight games against an opponent in the NFC.
- The total has gone under in four of Cincinnati’s last five games against an opponent in the NFC East.
- The total has gone over in four of Cincinnati’s last five games played in December.
- Dallas is 2-10 against the spread in their last 12 games.
- Dallas is 1-6 straight up in their last seven games.
- Dallas is 1-8 straight up in their last nine games on the road.
- Dallas is 2-8 against the spread in their last 10 games this season.
- Dallas is 0-6 straight up in their last six games against an opponent in the AFC.
- The total has gone over in five of Dallas’ last six games played in December.
- Two of ESPN’s 10 experts are taking a chance on the Bengals this week
- SB Nation only has one expert going with the Bengals
- CBS Sports has six of their seven experts going with the Cowboys
- NFL Pick Watch, which takes into account picks from across the web, has Cincinnati receiving 12 percent of the picks from experts.
This is a slightly better outlook from experts than last week when no one seemed to be daring to stick their neck out for the Bengals. It is a little surprising how one-sided this matchup seems to be against Cincinnati with Dallas coming to town. You could easily make the case that the Bengals have a chance against the Cowboys with the way both teams have played lately.
If Mixon was playing this week, things may be at least a little different, but with the Brandon Allen show having to try and win another game, the outlook remains bleak for the Bengals.
The things that Cincinnati has going for them is the Cowboys defense has been one of the worst in the NFL. Their rushing defense and points allowed are at or near the bottom of the NFL. This is the best chance for this offense to actually get off the ground for at least a game. The last two weeks, Allen and the offense have either had a drive or a play (Tyler Boyd’s 73-yard touchdown) that brought a little bit of a spark. It isn’t that much of a hot take to say that your offense needs to be able to score multiple touchdowns in a game to win.
The Bengals defense knows Dalton very well, and I wouldn’t be shocked to see someone come up with a timely interception based on them knowing the quarterbacks’ tendencies. Dallas is also trying their best with a beat up offensive line, which means someone outside of Carl Lawson should be able to help put pressure of the former-Bengal.
The Bengals don’t need to have the perfect game from the defense and special teams like it did the past couple of weeks. Allen and Giovani Bernard should be able to string a few drives together. However, if the Bengals really want to up their chances at a win one of those phases creating a score of their own would really help.
At the end of the day, Dallas still has the better quarterback. We saw it last week with the Bengals getting an early lead with the touchdown, but eventually the defense can only carry your team so far if your offense can’t consistently put points up on the board. This week Dalton gets his revenge.
Prediction: Cowboys 23, Bengals 13