coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:04 PM


  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0
coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:04 PM

ABOUT THE BENGALS (11-5): The discrepancy in Cincinnati's performance at home versus on the road is stunning - the Bengals averaged 42 points and had a victory margin of 24 points over their last five home wins. Andy Dalton reached career highs in yards (4,296) and touchdowns (33), but he was also intercepted a career-worst 20 times, including four picks in last week's 34-17 victory over Baltimore. A.J. Green also established career highs with 98 catches for 1,426 while matching last season's total of 11 touchdown receptions to complement the running of BenJarvus Green-Ellis and rookie Giovani Bernard, who combined for 1,451 yards rushing. Cincinnati ranked fifth both against the run (96.5 yards) and pass (209) while limiting five opponents to 17 points or fewer at home.

  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0
coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:04 PM

San Diego Chargers at Cincinnati Bengals (-7, 45.5)

Chargers' up-tempo attack vs. Bengals’ turf surface

It’s crazy to think, with all the artificial surfaces around the NFL, that the Chargers will be playing their first game of the season on turf in Cincinnati this weekend. San Diego hasn’t touched a plastic blade of grass all year – including the preseason – with all 10 road games taking place on the real deal. Now, the Bolts hit the fast track at Paul Brown Stadium where the forecast is warming up as gametime inches closer.

San Diego first-year head coach Mike McCoy has preached speed, speed and speed all season, turning up the intensity on both sides of the ball. The Bolts run an average of 66.2 plays per game and have upped that pace in the last three, posting 68.3 plays per outing in that span. The Bengals don’t care for that kind of track meet, allowing opponents to run an average of 58.7 plays over their last three games, and now must slow down a speedy San Diego team getting a boost from the non-slip surface in Cincy.

  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0
coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:05 PM

Cincy won home games this season by almost 18 points per game
(and covered by 13 points per game)
Tough competition in those home games:
Ravens – Steelers – Packers (with Rodgers) – Patriots – and Colts

  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0
coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:06 PM

Why You Eventually Regretted Taking the Chargers: You willingly took a West Coast team that (a) barely eked by Kansas City's second string in Week 17, (b) has the worst defense in the playoffs by far, and (c) shouldn't have made the playoffs anyway. Then, you expected them to hang tough in Round 1 on East Coast time, in freezing weather — against a no. 3 seed that went undefeated at home, always seem to get lucky plays/bounces/tips/rolls when they need them AND scored 208 points in their last five home games. And you did this because, and I quote, "nobody believed in them"? That was your plan, Socrates?

  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0
coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:06 PM

Why You Eventually Regretted Taking the Bengals: You forgot that they haven't won a playoff game since 1990, that Marvin Lewis is 0-4 in the playoffs, and that the Bengals barely sold out this game. You forgot that Cincy was starting two backup cornerbacks, and that Keenan Allen is winning the Offensive Rookie of the Year award for a reason. You actually said the words "I know Andy Dalton can be awful, but I don't think that's rearing its ugly head until Round 2 or Round 3." You ignored how the Chargers lost their seven games by 3, 3, 10, 6 (in OT), 8, 4 and 7 points … in other words, they always hang around, and yet you stupidly laid a TD against them. You forgot to read my illegitimate son Barnwell on this Sunday's games, so you never knew that Cincy's 8-0 home record isn't as intimidating as it sounds — of the last seven teams to go 8-0 at home that played outdoors, five lost their first playoff home game. Instead, you took the inferior QB, and you weren't scared enough that the superior QB kicked ass in Philly, Kansas City and Denver this season. Most important, you ignored this email in Simmons's column from Jesse in Los Angeles …

"Has any team executed the 'nobody believes in us' strategy in week 17 more perfectly than this year's Chargers? Going to overtime due to a missed 41 yard field goal (not to mention the apparent missed call by the referees) against the Chiefs B-Team and then barely eking out the victory. Think about it, they couldn't even beat a team of practice squad players without the help of some higher power AND the help of the NFL's finest. NOBODY BELIEVES IN YOU SAN DIEGO!!"

  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0
coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:06 PM

1. Cincinnati has won the past three meetings, including a 20-13 victory at San Diego in December 2012.

2. Rivers is 3-4 with eight TD passes and nine interceptions in seven postseason games.

3. The Bengals are 0-4 and have failed to score more than 17 points in four playoff appearances under Marvin Lewis.

  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0
coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:06 PM


Matchup: San Diego Chargers at Cincinnati Bengals

Spread: Bengals minus-7
Public consensus pick: 59 percent picked Bengals

Public perception: This is the biggest spread of the wild-card weekend, but that isn't keeping the public from being willing to back the favorite. The Bengals are 8-0 SU and ATS at home, so that certainly catches the public's attention, plus the Chargers didn't gather much support after letting down the public last week when they were dominated by the Chiefs' backups and should have lost as 14-point favorites. Many don't feel they deserve to be in the playoffs.

Wiseguys' view: Again, we'll find sharps on both sides here. While there are those that feel the Bengals are clearly the better team and grabbed the minus-6.5 lines that have been available, there are others that see the Chargers as a live underdog. For everyone that says the Chargers are a sun-loving bunch from California that won't want to play in the cold, there are others that point to the fact the Chargers went into Kansas City and Denver and won cold-weather games during the regular season.

Tuley's Take: I've said it before, but I'll say it again: I really like this Bengals team, and I've been burned a number of times when going against it this year (including just last week with the Ravens, though I still don't know how the Ravens went from looking like they would cover to losing 34-17). But at the same time, I just feel this is too many points to pass up. As alluded to in the previous section, the Chargers have done just fine away from home in the cold. Their first meeting was a 17-10 win by Cincinnati, and it wouldn't surprise me to see another low-scoring battle where the points come into play.

The pick: Chargers (lean to the under).

  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0
coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:08 PM


  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0
coleryan Posts:21326 Followers:24
01/05/2014 12:09 PM


  • Last 7 Days Record: 2-3-0