NFL Betting Picks – Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals

NFL Betting Pick Ravens Vs. Bengals

NFL Betting Picks – Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals

Of all the NFL betting picks I’m making this weekend, this is one of the easiest calls to make. There was a moment where I really believed that Baltimore could come through as the defending champs and sneak in to the playoffs with a surge late in the season, but those hopes were dashed when they were crushed 7-41 by the Patriots last weekend. Visiting Cincinnati won’t offer any relief, especially with the Bengals posting a surreal 7-0 SU and ATS record at home this year.

Superstitious gamblers will tell you that the Super Bowl hangover is a real thing, and it’s hard to debate that ideology in the vacuum of the Ravens’ 2013 campaign. Baltimore lost three huge leaders in Anquan Boldin, Ray Lewis and Ed Reed and while all of their departures were understandable (and in Lewis’s case unavoidable since he retired), the Ravens never really filled their voids.

Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals
The Baltimore Ravens are 6 points underdogs facing their AFC North rivals, the Cincinnati Bengals, in the NFL’s week 17.
Starts: 12/29/2013 1:00PM
Paul Brown Stadium, One Paul Brown Stadium
Cincinnati, Ohio

 

The offence stumbled without the sure handed Boldin, and tight end Dennis Pitta’s injury held him out for the majority of the season. Part of my optimism for the Ravens lingered on Pitta’s return, but he’s been a complete waste of time in the last couple of weeks. Baltimore has very little room for error considering how predictable they are offensively, which is part of the reason that they’ve gone just 1-3 SU and 2-2 ATS in their last 4 road games. Opponents understand that containing Ray Rice, and challenging Flacco to take over the game, is the key to beating the 2012 Super Bowl champions. Flacco is a very underrated quarterback in my opinion, but he lacks dependable weapons in the passing game.

The Ravens require a Miami loss and a win here to get in to the post season, but that seems highly unlikely. The Bengals have railed anyone who has dared to visit Paul Brown Stadium this year, and they have plenty of motivation in this game as moderate favorites in my NFL betting picks this weekend. A win here or a loss by Indianapolis secures the third seed for Bengals in the AFC, which is simply a much more favorable spot to be in so you can avoid Kansas City in the first weekend of the playoffs.

BONUS WEEK 17 BETTING PICKS

Date
Home
Visit
Pick
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Jacksonville
Indianapolis
JAX +11.5
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Detroit
Minnesota
MIN -3.0
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Houston
Tennessee
TEN -7.0
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Cleveland
Pittsburgh
CLE +7.0
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Washington
New York Giants
NYG -3.5
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
New York Jets
Miami
MIA -5.5
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Carolina
Atlanta
ATL +6.0
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Baltimore
Cincinnati
CIN -6.0
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Buffalo
New England
BUF +8.5
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Tampa Bay
New Orleans
TB +13.0
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Denver
Oakland
DEN -13.0
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
San Francisco
Arizona
SF PK
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Kansas City
San Diego
SD -9.5
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
St. Louis
Seattle
STL +10.5
Sun, Dec 29th 2013
Philadelphia
Dallas
PHI -6.0

This game could very well be a preview of things to come. If the Bengals lose, and Miami somehow loses to the Jets, then Baltimore would visit Paul Brown Stadium again in the wild card round. However, I think that is useless conjecture. The Bengals are firing on all cylinders at home, have posted a ridiculous +25.8 winning differential in their last 4 home games and are easily the better take this weekend against a division rival. In other words, Cincinnati remains an automatic pick to bet on at home.

NFL Betting Pick – Cincinnati -6.0