Cincinnati Bengals and Las Vegas Raiders will open the NFL Playoff action with Saturday’s afternoon clash. The home side enjoyed a very good regular season, and they want to continue in the playoffs. The visitors finally made it to the playoffs, and they look forward to going as far as possible.
Cincinnati secured the post-season ticket before the final round, and they had the chance to rest some important players in the previous match. The hosts want to bounce back and progress to the next round. On the other hand, Las Vegas was successful last weekend, and that win secured them a chance to challenge the Lombardi trophy.
Cincinnati Bengals – Can they take the home field advantage?
The Bengals went first through the finish line in the very exciting battle in the AFC North. Despite the defeat in the closing round of the regular season, thanks to the Ravens’ terrible streak, Cincinnati took over the top spot. They are at a 10-7 record and have the privilege to play at the home field in this round. Cincinnati heads to this match after losing to the Browns 21-16 since they lacked an offensive effort, gaining just 186 yards.
Joe Burrow leads the Bengals’ offense with 4,611 yards through the air, with 34 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. On the other hand, he has been sacked 51 times by the opponent’s defenders. Joe Mixon has dominated Cincinnati’s ground game with 1,205 yards and 13 TDs, while Samaje Perine and Joe Burrow have combined for 364 rushing yards and three scores. Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins are the leading receivers in the team with 1,000+ yards each, while Tyler Boyd has contributed with 828 receiving yards and five touchdown receptions. On defense, Logan Wilson has a team-high 100 total tackles, while Trey Hendrickson logged 14 sacks.
Expected Line-Up (Offense): Joe Mixon, Tee Higgins, Ja’Marr Chase, Tyler Boyd, C.J. Uzomah, Jonah Williams, Quinton Spain, Trey Hopkins, Hakeem Adeniji, Isaiah Prince
Expected Line-Up (Defense): Sam Hubbard, D.J. Reader, Larry Ogunjobi, Trey Hendrickson, Logan Wilson, Clay Johnston, Markus Bailey, Eli Apple, Vonn Bell, Jessie Bates III, Chidobe Awuzie
Quarter Back: Joe Burrow
Kicker: Evan McPherson
with best odds
Las Vegas Raiders – Are they capable of proceeding further?
After several failures, the Raiders reached the playoffs for the first time. They were excellent when it mattered the most, beating the Chargers 35-32 after overtime. Although a draw was enough for both teams to progress to the post-season, Las Vegas played for a victory and knocked out their fierce rivals. Thanks to four straight wins, they eventually finished second in the AFC West with a 10-7 record.
Las Vegas’s starting quarterback Derek Carr has passed for 4,804 yards in the regular season, with 23 TDs and 14 picks. Josh Jacobs is the Raiders’ leading rusher with 872 yards and nine touchdowns, while Kenyan Drake and Peyton Barber have gained 200+ rushing yards each. Hunter Renfrow leads the receiving corps with 1,038 yards and nine touchdown receptions, while Darren Waller and Bryan Edwards have combined for 1,236 receiving yards and five scores. On the other hand, Denzel Perryman dominated the Raiders’ defense with 154 total tackles, while Yannick Ngakoue sacked the rival’s QBs ten times.
Expected Line-Up (Offense): Peyton Barber, Hunter Renfrow, Bryan Edwards, Zay Jones, Foster Moreau, Sutton Smith, Kolton Miller, John Simpson, Andre James, Alex Leatherwood, Brandon Parker
Expected Line-Up (Defense): Maxx Crosby, Quinton Jefferson, Solomon Thomas, Yannick Ngakoue, Divine Deablo, Denzel Perryman, K.J. Wright, Brandon Facyson, Dallin Leavitt, Tyree Gillespie, Keisean Nixon
Quarter Back: Derek Carr
Kicker: Daniel Carlson
Expert Pick #1 – Las Vegas Raiders +5.5 @-110
The Raiders are full of confidence, and they don’t want to go away easily. They have been pretty successful on the road lately, winning five times in eight outings. Although the Bengals are a better team, I believe the visitors cover the number here, so I’ll take them as the first pick.
Expert Pick #2 – Over 49 @-110
Cincinnati’s last four games went over the margin, while the Raiders have also been involved in high-scoring matches this season. I expect to see a great offensive effort from both teams, resulting in at least 49 points. Give me the Over as the second bet.
Expert Pick #3 – Raiders Over 20 @-145
Las Vegas has been pretty productive lately, scoring 23+ points in each of their last two games. They want to pull off the best effort to progress to the next round, and they might continue their scoring streak. Although the odds are a bit shorter, I’ll take the Over on the Raiders.