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Bengals vs Chargers betting odds – Chargers to clinch No. 2 seed with win; Bengals to cover

Posted by Stan Simmons on 12/18/2009 2:46:13 PM

NFL Odds: Pick Bengals +7

NFL latest linesThe Bengals vs Chargers betting odds pits the No. 2 and No. 3 seeds in the AFC playoff picture against each this Sunday. While only one game separates the two, their recent on-field play couldn’t paint a more different picture. Online betting fans have seen the Bengals lose two of their last four games included an ugly loss in Oakland and a one-sided defeat in Minnesota last week. Meanwhile, the Chargers have won eight straight games overall and 16 straight December games. Look for those two trends to continue as the Chargers seal the No. 2 seed in the AFC this Sunday.

Sportsbook Odds: Chargers -7, O/U: 43.5

What’s On The Line?
The train has come off the track for the Bengals (9-4) who have lost their last two road games and have started to put some doubt in the minds of pundits who believed in them so much. Injuries have been a culprit as several key members are playing, but not quite 100%. A trip to San Diego won’t cure that.

For the Chargers (10-3), does anyone remember their 2-3 start? They are flat out rolling right now and they aren’t just beating cream puffs. The Chargers have a home game left with the Washington Redskins but aside from that, they have swept the NFC East. They also crushed Denver along with their other feeble AFC West neighbors during this winning streak. This is a team that is focused on one thing: the Super Bowl.

Offensive Matchups: Bengals vs Chargers betting odds
The Bengals offense has gone awry in recent weeks. Carson Palmer and the passing game was averaging 229.7 yards per game in the first seven weeks but has averaged just 172.2 in the last six weeks. In those contests, NFL betting cappers have seen the Bengals score more than 18 points just once.

The Chargers have not experienced any sort of a drought. They are the fourth-highest scoring unit in the NFL and they have carved up every defense in sight. Philip Rivers is making a case for MVP (22 TD, 7 INT), especially without having much support from his ground game. The Bengals have an excellent run defense but the Chargers won’t bother testing it this week considering how good their passing game is working right now.

Betting Edge: Chargers

Defensive Matchups: Bengals vs Chargers betting odds
The Bengals defense has been one of the better units in the NFL this year but they were picked apart last week. The Bengals gave up a season-high 30 points to the Vikings last week, which shows that they are fading a little bit. The pass rush is very weak right now and the team is sorely missing Antwan Odom, who is out for the year. Last week, the linebackers were exposed in coverage, which is bad news considering Antonio Gates is on the radar this week.

Meanwhile, the Chargers defense has been improving week-by-week. They haven’t given up more than 23 points in a game during the eight-game winning streak and have held those opponents to an average of 15.4 points per game. Quarterback pressures is still a problem, which could allow the Bengals the time they need to make downfield plays this week.

Betting Edge: Even

Notable Injuries: Bengals vs Chargers betting odds
The Bengals will be without a couple of key defensive players this week as tackle Domata Peko and safety Chris Crocker will miss this contest.

The Chargers are relatively healthy for this contest.

Betting Edge: Charges

Over/Under Picks: Bengals vs Chargers betting odds
This game figures to be a shootout. The Bengals defense is not good in pass coverage while the Chargers bread and butter is their passing game. Cincinnati should be able to move the ball a little better this week as their offensive line won’t be overmatched like it was against the Vikings.

In good weather, this has over written all over it.

Pick: UNDER 43.5

Outlook and Pick: Bengals vs Chargers betting
The Bengals are on their second consecutive road game and this one is a West Coast trip. The last time they had a West Coast trip, they lost outright in Oakland. While the Bengals struggled last week, look for a much better performance this time around.

They aren’t likely to win given how well the Chargers are playing but they have the weapons to keep this within a touchdown.

STAN'S PICK: Bengals +7

Visit the Betting Edge for all your sports betting analysis, including Bengals vs Chargers betting odds and many other NFL matchups.



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