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Falcons Look To Avoid Injury Heading In To Preseason Opener Versus Bengals

Posted by Tony Bryant on 8/6/2013 1:53:56 AM

The Atlanta Falcons came within one score of reaching the Super Bowl in 2013. This year they feel like they have what they need to take care of unfinished business. The Falcons will host the Cincinnati Bengals in their preseason opener on Thursday, with little to worry about other than getting through the online sports betting contest without any major injuries. The same can be said for a Cincinnati team that appears to be on the right track after playoff appearances in back-to-back seasons for the first time in franchise history.

Cincinnati Bengals @ Atlanta Falcons
Thursday August 8, 2013 – 8:00 PM ET
Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Georgia
NFL Sports Betting Preview: Cincinnati – 1.5

The Bengals will look to win in the playoffs under Marvin Lewis this year, and many of the starting jobs have already been solidified. This will be an important year for quarterback Andy Dalton as he looks to prove he is the man in Cincinnati, but he’s unlikely to see much action in week one.

NFL Betting Preview: Cincinnati Bengals

That means the majority of the snaps will go to John Skelton, Josh Johnson, and Zac Robinson as they battle for the No. 2 and No. 3 jobs behind Dalton, something worth keeping an eye on. The Bengals will also have a pair of top picks on the field as first-round pick tight end Tyler Eifert gets his first taste of NFL action as well as second-round pick running back Giovani Bernard. Cincinnati’s defense has ranked among the best in the league under defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer the past few years, and quality depth will be key to being among the best in the NFL again this season.

NFL Betting Preview: Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons’ biggest offseason addition is running back Stephen Jackson, who isn’t likely to see much time along with Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, Roddy White, and Tony Gonzalez in a veteran offense. Seventh-round rookie quarterback Seth Doege will see action along with Dominique Davis at quarterback, but it’s hard to predict what to expect from that group. The defense will also feature a handful of rookies including first-round pick Desmond Trufant and defensive end Malliciah Goodman, and they could see a lot of action if the offense struggles in this one.

NFL Betting Preview: Outlook & Pick

The most important position on the field is quarterback and the Bengals have the much stronger depth there with Skelton and Johnson battling for the No. 2 job. The Falcons may be more ready to challenge for a Super Bowl, but Cincinnati is more prepared for week one of the preseason in terms of the talent available, and should be able to come out on top in this online sportsbook contest as Ryan likely doesn’t see much if any action for Atlanta. The Falcons elected not to bring in a veteran backup passer in the offseason, so it will be interesting to see how the offense looks in this one.

NFL Betting Pick: Cincinnati Bengals


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