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Joe Burrow and Ja'Marr Chase of the Cincinnati Bengals walk off the field after defeating the New Orleans Saints at Caesars Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images via AFP.
Joe Burrow and Ja'Marr Chase of the Cincinnati Bengals walk off the field after defeating the New Orleans Saints at Caesars Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images via AFP.

Can Joe Burrow and Co. capitalize on their window after back-to-back trips to the AFC Championship Game? Here are a few markets worth attacking in our Bengals betting preview based on the odds from our best sports betting apps.

The Cincinnati Bengals came up just short of another Super Bowl appearance when they suffered a 23-20 defeat to the Kansas City Chiefs during the 2023 AFC Championship Game. Still, the Bengals have established themselves as a contender following a 12-4 campaign and their second straight AFC North crown.

But the clock is ticking on this current window for the Bengals. For now, the trio of Joe Burrow, Ja'Marr Chase, and Tee Higgins make up about $24 million of the team's salary cap. It won't be long until each player nets a big payday, making roster construction around them much more difficult.

So, can the Bengals finally cash in during the 2023 season?

Check out our 2023 Bengals betting preview based on the odds from our best NFL betting sites (pick confidence based on a 1-to-5-star scale). 

Bengals betting preview 2023

(Picks made on July 12)

Bengals to win Under 11.5 games (-125 via Caesars) ⭐⭐

(Odds as of Aug. 29)

Over11.5 (+125)11.5 (+118)10.5 (-145)11.5 (+105)11.5 (+120)
Under11.5 (-150)11.5 (-144)10.5 (+110)11.5 (-141)11.5 (-150)

The Bengals have won double-digit games in each of the last two years, posting a regular-season record of 22-11 during that span. Cincinnati has cleared its win total for two straight seasons, surpassing 6.5 victories in 2021 and 9.5 wins in 2022.

Our best sports betting sites are showing the Bengals plenty of respect while bumping their win total up to 11.5 in 2023, which might lead to value on the Under. My fair price on Under 11.5 wins is right around -200.

Editor's note: Since this pick was made, the best odds on Under 11.5 wins is priced at -141 via Caesars.

We're projecting south of 11 wins in 2023, though Cincinnati's six divisional matchups could end up determining the outcome here. The Bengals went 3-3 against their AFC North foes in 2023, with all three victories taking place following their Week 10 bye.

This is only a two-star play because fading the Bengals is not for the faint-hearted.

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Bengals to win AFC North (+160 via Caesars) ⭐⭐⭐

(Odds as of Aug. 29)

To win Super Bowl+1100+1000+1100+1000+1100
To win AFC+550+550+500+500+550
To win AFC North+140+150+155+160+140

The best sportsbooks are showing more respect to Cincinnati compared to this time last year. Last summer, the Bengals were given +2000 odds to win the Super Bowl and +1100 odds to take the AFC following their magical run in the previous postseason. Cincinnati was also slapped with a +175 preseason price tag to win its division.

Based on market-based power ratings, there's no real value for the Bengals on the board here. Using Unabated's season simulator tool in late-August, the true price on their Super Bowl (+1353), AFC Championship (+714), and AFC North (+172) odds all fall short of their current market value.

With the AFC North value being the closest to a fair price, I'm comfortable recommending the Bengals to win the division as a three-star play. I still have Cincinnati as a top-five team in my power ratings, which puts the team comfortably ahead of the rest of the AFC North. It helps that Burrow is clearly the best quarterback in this division.

But I still like the upside of this team even, if the Bengals end up with a worse regular-season record due to how competitive this division projects to become. So, I'll be keeping a close eye on Cincinnati's Super Bowl and AFC Championship odds, staying ready to pounce if there's ever a dip at the best live betting sites.

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Bengals picks & predictions 2023

Ja'Marr Chase to be Offensive Player of the Year (+1200 via bet365) ⭐⭐

The market has become pretty wise when it comes to Offensive Player of the Year, an award typically given to the NFL's best non-quarterback. Minnesota Vikings receiver Justin Jefferson was a popular pick in 2022 to win OPOY, and he then proceeded to do so with a 128-catch, 1,809-yard season.

That's why I'm comfortable betting on Chase, who enters the year as a co-favorite along with Jefferson. We should trust the market in this case and take advantage of the +1200 value at bet365 when Chase is trading as short as 10/1 elsewhere.

While I maintain expectations for what the Bengals can accomplish, Chase can still win this award without his team finishing as a No. 1 or No. 2 seed in the AFC. The same can't be said for Burrow's MVP case, as he's priced as short as +700 to take the honor.

Chase accumulated 1,046 yards and nine touchdowns on 87 receptions in just 12 games during the 2023 season. If we can get a full campaign out of the third-year receiver, Chase will remind everyone why he's one of the league's most dangerous offensive players.

Ja'Marr Chase Over 10.5 receiving touchdowns (+110 via Caesars) ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Chase is unlikely to win OPOY without delivering plenty of touchdowns for fantasy football managers. But that's not why I'm betting on his Over. We know Chase can score touchdowns in a hurry, as he's already logged five multi-score games during his young career.

The two-time Pro Bowler has recorded 22 touchdowns across 29 career games. That mark is tied for second in the NFL, trailing only Davante Adams of the Las Vegas Raiders over that span.

Chase is the preseason favorite to lead the league in receiving touchdowns at +700 through FanDuel. The NFL's receiving touchdown leader has averaged 16 scores per season across the last three years.

However, we just need 11 TDs from Chase to cash this ticket at Caesars. ESPN's Mike Clay is projecting exactly 11 touchdowns from him in 2023. That helps make this +110 price extremely enticing, especially when you compare it to bet365's -105 on the same Over.

Bengals to finish with Under 3.5 division wins (+140 via DraftKings) ⭐⭐⭐

The Bengals can still win the division and accomplish all their goals while not finishing above .500 within the AFC North. That was the case in 2022, when three of Cincinnati's four losses came against its division rivals. The Bengals are 8-10 against the AFC North since drafting Burrow.

Not only will the AFC North be even more of a slugfest in 2023, but a preseason injury to Burrow could significantly impact the start of the season. The Bengals open the year with a road meeting against the Cleveland Browns before welcoming the Baltimore Ravens to town in Week 2.

For a deeper breakdown on this start, check out my column on three bets to consider while Burrow is sidelined.

It remains unclear how long Burrow will be dealing with this calf injury. The team could take it slow, putting his status for the first two games in doubt. We also don't know how effective he'll be with minimal preseason reps. After all, Burrow threw four interceptions during a Week 1 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers after coming back from an injury.

There's at least enough uncertainty that I'm willing to take a plus-money price on the Bengals to not finish above .500 against the AFC North. Caesars took down this market after Burrow's injury, so we'll take advantage of DraftKings leaving this line up.

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