Our NFL Betting Editor brings you his top Patriots vs. Bengals predictions and picks for their Week 16 NFL Showdown, which is live Saturday on CBS at 1 p.m. ET.
After one of the most demoralizing losses in recent memory, the New England Patriots will return to PKBborough, Mass., and try to mend the pieces against a surging Cincinnati Bengals team that can officially lock down a spot. in the playoffs.
Patriots pick vs. Bengals
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Patriots vs. Bengals predictions and analysis
For the better part of two decades, stupid mistakes were rare for New England. These types of personal blunders just didn’t fit “The Patriot Way,” which was Bill Belichick’s longtime philosophy that emphasized good, clean football. But now the careless mistakes seem to be piling up, and perhaps none was more evident than New England’s side play late in their game against the Raiders last week. That incident might have cost the Patriots the competition, but it hasn’t cost them a playoff berth just yet.
The road doesn’t get any easier for New England, especially with the Bengals coming to town. Cincinnati has won eight of its last nine to take first place in the AFC North, and even a 17-0 deficit to the greatest quarterback of all time couldn’t slow the Bengals down on Sunday. After coming so close to a championship last season, Cincinnati now finds itself peaking at the right time with aspirations to get the job done this time around.
As the saying goes, good teams win, but great teams cover. If that statement is true, place this year’s Bengals team in the Hall of Fame.
Cincinnati is 11-3 ATS this season and has covered each of its last six games. Meanwhile, the Patriots have failed to cover three of their last four games, making Saturday’s game a battle between two teams heading in completely opposite directions.
Don’t overthink things here – get your hot hand up. It’s a very winnable game for the Bengals, and when New England loses, it doesn’t keep things close. Six of the Patriots’ seven losses have resulted in at least six points this season, while the other would have resulted in a push (27-24 loss to Green Bay on Oct. 2) in this case.
Take: Bengals to cover -3.0 to -120 with Caesars Sportsbook
Joe Burrow over 1.5 passing touchdowns
If there’s been one sign of consistency for New England this season, it’s their defense’s ability to keep opposing ball carriers out of the end zone.
The Patriots allowed fullbacks to score just three touchdowns, the fewest in the league. Joe Mixon racked up 136 runs in 25 in his only game against New England but still failed to cross the goal line.
So what does all this mean? Well, if Cincinnati consistently wants to put six in, it’ll have to do it through Burrow. He’s thrown two kills in four of his last five games, including each of the last three.
Although wide receiver Tee Higgins (hamstring) and tight end Hayden Hurst (calf) — a combined duo for eight receiving touchdowns — have been restricted to practice this week, Higgins should at least be back. Even if one or both sit down, Burrow still shouldn’t have any issues using Tyler Boyd, Ja’Marr Chase and others to make sure this prop works.
Take: Joe Burrow will throw over 1.5 touchdowns @ -154 with Caesars Sportsbook
Ja’Marr Chase anytime TD scorer +118
Over the past five games, Chase has become awfully familiar with the end zone.
He’s scored seven touchdowns in that streak, and facing a tough Patriots defense will have the Bengals relying on the passing game.
With Higgins ailing, Chase should have even more looks in New England territory and in the red zone, making him a must bet on the Christmas Eve slate. Pairing this bet with the Burrow prop could also be a great play, because if one hits, the other probably will too. Taking this side-plus accessory is an absolute steal.
Take: Ja’Marr Chase +118 anytime touchdown scorer with Caesars Sportsbook
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Bengals vs. Patriots Odds
Odds provided by Caesars Sportsbook. Correct at time of publication and subject to change.
|Team||propagated||Moneyline||Total points 41.5|
|patriots||(+3.0) +100||+135||More than -110|
|bengals||(-3.0) -120||-160||Less than -110|