Both the Denver Broncos and Cincinnati Bengals come into their week 13 matchup at 5-6 on the season, but they couldn’t be headed in more different directions if they tried.
The Broncos are riding high after picking up one of the biggest wins of their season, while the Bengals are in a full-on tailspin and hoping to right the ship before falling out of playoff contention entirely.
The Broncos come into this one as 5-point favorites at MyBookie as they look to ride their wave of momentum to a road win here.
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Broncos Week 13 Outlook
The Denver Broncos are 10th in the league in yards per play, moving the rock for 5.9 yards on average each offensive snap. Denver is 19th in the league in scoring, though, averaging 22.9 points per game. Such a disparity between yardage production and points scored indicates that the Broncos need to do a better job of finishing drives going forward.
Vance Joseph’s team is second in the league in rushing average, earning 5.2 yards per attempt on the ground. They’ve done so without a big name running back, instead getting big contributions from Phillip Lindsay, who is averaging 5.8 yards per carry despite being an undrafted rookie. Going from the scrap heap to the top of the heap, Lindsay has been one of the best stories in the league this year.
In the passing game, the Broncos are tied for 19th in the league with 6.8 yards per play in the passing game. That mark puts them equal to the Miami Dolphins and Oakland Raiders, teams not exactly known for their passing attacks. Case Keenum has not lived up to expectations this year, which will be a theme at the quarterback position in this game.
On defense, the Broncos are allowing 6.0 yards per play, putting them in a tie for 22nd in the league. Despite all of the credit that their pass rush gets, the Broncos have been softer than a pillow defensively this year, although they have done a good job of bending but not breaking in the red zone, as they showed with their game-winning goal line stand against Pittsburgh last week.
Against the run, the Broncos are tied for 21st in the league with 4.7 yards per carry allowed. And the Broncos are tied for 23rd in the league against the pass, giving up 7.4 yards per attempt through the air. Their run defense will be a concern in this game, as the Bengals boast one of the better ground attacks in the NFL.
Bengals Week 13 Outlook
The Cincinnati Bengals are tied for 15th in the NFL in yards per play on offense, averaging 5.7 yards per snap on offense. Their 25.1 points per game are good for a tie for 12th in the league to this point in the season. But a lot of their success on offense came early in the season, as the Bengals have failed to score over 21 points in any of their last three games, which have all been losses.
Marvin Lewis’ offense is tied for eighth in the league in yards per carry, as they have moved the ball for 4.7 yards per attempt on the ground. Joe Mixon has been their driving force on the ground, as he is approaching 700 yards rushing for the season despite missing time due to injury earlier in the year.
Cincinnati has averaged 6.6 yards per pass attempt on the season, good for a tie for 23rd in the league with the Dallas Cowboys entering week 13. Their top wide receiver, AJ Green, has been missing time due to a toe injury, which has sent the Bengals offense directly off of a cliff. Green might be available this week, but that is something bettors should look for before deciding to back a team that clearly looks lost without him.
The Bengals have struggled in a big way defensively, giving up 6.2 yards per play this season. That number puts them in a tie for 25th in the league with the likes of the Seattle Seahawks, Detroit Lions, and Los Angeles Rams. When you are the Rams and Seahawks, and you can move the ball offensively, that isn’t the end of the world. But for a team like the Bengals, those numbers can be problematic.
Cincinnati is tied for 21st in yardage allowed on the ground, giving up 4.7 yards per carry. They are also 27th against the pass this season, allowing 7.8 yards per attempt through the air. Against the Broncos rushing attack, the Bengals will need to step it up against the run, lest they want to make it four straight losses.
The Bengals brought in Hue Jackson to be a part of their coaching staff after the Browns let him go. Since then, the team has lost every game it has played and was just run off of the field by the Browns, his former team. If there is a way to grind the momentum of a team’s season to a halt, the Bengals will find a way to do it.
Broncos vs. Bengals Trends
Denver enters this matchup against Cincinnati at 5-6 straight up for the year and 5-5-1 against the spread. The Broncos have been red hot against the spread, though, going 5-1 against the spread in their last six games after an 0-4-1 start against the number. Road games have been a huge problem for Denver, though, as they have gone just 4-11 against the spread in their last 15 games away from the Mile High City.
Cincinnati is also 5-6 straight up for the year, and are 5-6 against the spread as well. The Bengals are 9-3 against the spread in their last 12 games against AFC foes, but they have only covered the spread once in their last six games. Even being at home hasn’t helped the ice cold Bengals, who have gone 0-4 against the spread in their last four games on home turf. Cincy will have to hope that their 6-2 run against the spread following a double-digit home loss will be enough to overcome their struggles as of late.
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NFL Free Pick
The Bengals look like a team that has given up on their season after Hue Jackson joined the coaching staff.
Without any answers for remedial offenses like the Lamar Jackson-led Ravens or for the Cleveland Browns, it looks like the Bengals are going to just fade into the distance in the AFC playoff race. The Broncos will use that to their advantage to further their ascent.
Bet the Broncos -5 (-115)
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