Desperation will set in for one of Thursday’s featured NFL teams, the Dolphins and Bengals, if they can’t pick up the primetime win in Week 4. Both clubs come into this week’s slate at 1-2, and for Cincinnati falling behind 1-3 could be a death sentence in the ultra-competitive AFC North. For Miami, it’s once again chasing the Patriots in the AFC East, left to duke it out in a season-long race for second place.
Here’s what bettor should watch for in Thursday Night Football before you check your football teaser odds:
Bengals big faves
Cincinnati is a touchdown favorite hosting Miami in Week 4. As mentioned above, the Bengals can’t afford to drop another game – especially one at home – and look to get their defense back on track after allowing Broncos quarterback Trevor Siemian to pass for four touchdowns and 312 yards in Week 3’s loss to Denver. Cincy was gashed for big yards on the ground in the first two weeks but only allowed 52 yards rushing versus the Broncos. Now if they can figure out what’s wrong against the pass, bettors could see the Bengals defense they’re used to.
After opening against the Seahawks and Patriots, the Dolphins’ Week 3 meeting with the Browns was supposed to be a cake walk. Oddsmakers installed Miami as a 10-point home favorite with Cleveland working with its third and fourth-string QBs. However, the Fins needed overtime to avoid their third straight loss and gave up 24 points to a mish-mash Browns offense. Miami has allowed 147.3 rushing yards per game through three weeks, which ranks 31st in the league. That also means the Dolphins have been punished in time of possession, holding on to the football for an average of only 25:03.
Miami has had Cincinnati’s number in recent meetings, winning outright and against the spread in their last three contests going back to 2010. The Dolphins and Bengals haven’t played since 2013, however, so take those historic stats with a grain of salt. Miami has managed to cover only twice in its last seven road games while Cincinnati is 0-3-1 ATS in its last four home stands in Paul Brown Stadium.