After a 7-7 Sunday against the spread it is time to bring that number over .500 for the week on Monday Night Football. Here is my pick for tonight’s Cincinnati Bengals-Pittsburgh Steelers game (with some bonus prop bets included).
BENGALS (-6.5) over Steelers
Bengals (0-1, 0-1 ATS) Steelers (0-1, 0-1 ATS)
Mike Tomlin’s 7-2 record on Monday Night Football is about to be placed to the test tonight against a Bengals team that senses that they could takeover the AFC North with the Ravens and Steelers appearing to be falling off with Baltimore’s Super Bowl hangover and the Steelers roster turnover. To do that they will need to beat the Steelers this evening as after a loss to the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field, the Bengals will go into Monday night 0-1 making their game against the Steelers an even more important divisional battle.
The Bengals biggest issue in their loss to the Bears was getting to Jay Cutler as the Bears offensive line kept the Bengals from getting a sack. They will have an easier time this week as the Steelers have already lost starting center Maurkice Pouncey to injury during Week One, something that changed the momentum in their loss to the Titans. Throw in James Harrison looking to get revenge on his former team and you can expect the reason the Bengals lost last Sunday to be rectified by the Cincy pass rush making a point to get to Big Ben early and often.
Bottom line is that the Steelers are just not the same team as the ones that went to the Super Bowl, they lost their running back and a huge part of what they did on defense in Harrison. Regardless of how good their coaching is or Big Ben’s reputation this is a Pittsburgh team that could easily miss the playoffs by a handful of games this season. 6.5 points would usually be too much to ask, but as we saw on Sunday night with the Seahawks, I see Cincy putting together a statement at home against their division rivals.
Team to Commit First Penalty: Steelers -120
With a new center I like the chances of the Steelers getting a false start early on the road tonight.
AJ Green to Score Touchdown -200/AJ Green to Score First TD +600
Green and Dalton went vertical a lot against the Bears, if you want a good prop bet with long odds the first touchdown play might just be for you.
Total Sacks: Under 5.5 -115
Cincy allowed just two sacks against the Bears last week and even if they have a better pass rush this week I still think that number hits the under.
Team to Score Longest TD: Bengals -135
Once again: AJ Green
Total Made Field Goals: Over 3.5 +110
The AFC North usually buys you low scores and tons of field goals, I like each team kicking a couple each tonight.