Cincinnati Bengals @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Sunday 9.25pm UK, Raymond James Stadium, Tampa
Two big sides clash in Florida, with Divisional titles and access to the promised land of postseason very much on the line.
Tampa, on the face of it, have had a disappointing campaign. Still however, they head the NFC South courtesy of the Panthers, Falcons and Saints faring even worse.
Tom Brady’s well-publicised domestic issues can’t have helped the evergreen legend find his best form, and 25/1 about another Super Bowl this time around just about sums ’em up. Talking of which – 4s the field indicates just how wide-open it remains.
The Bengals will be far more content, heading the AFC North (9-and-4), but have the Ravens breathing down their necks. Great incentives all round then, as the regular season enters its final laps.
Betting – which can of course fluctuate between now and game time. Bengals 1/2, Bucs 13/8. On the spread it’s Bengals -3.5 @ 20/23, Bucs + 3.5 @ 20/21. The game total points is set at 44.5, with under and over both trading at 10/11.
Bucs have struggled on offense, but the Bengals are top-five. Defensively there’s very little in it, but the Bucs just have the edge.
Cincy QB Joe Burrow is a player I like – and his connection with Ja’Marr Chase is something that hopefully will keep the faithful entertained for many a season to come.
Tampa were thrashed by the ‘niners last time, Brady was intercepted twice, and they hardly went a yard on the ground all day – about 69 only in fact.
I’ve a feeling that despite being on the road, Cincinnati have the form and most certainly the momentum to prevail here. It’s five on the spin, and the joy of six is a distinct possibility.
Selection – Bengals money line @ 1/2; Bengals spread -3.5 @ 20/23; 1st touchdown scorer Ja’Marr Chase @ 13/2