NFL Week 15 Pick: Cincinnati Bengals at Minnesota Vikings

Matthew Jordan

Tuesday, December 12, 2017 8:16 PM UTC

Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2017 8:16 PM UTC

In January 2014, the Vikings hired Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer as their head coach. That has worked out very well. Survivor Pick: Minnesota.

Cincinnati Bengals at Minnesota Vikings (-11, 42)

Completely different motivations here. The Bengals have squat to play for and they looked like a team already thinking of the offseason in a 33-7 blowout home loss – in front of thousands of empty seats – against a bad Bears team last week. That was an unacceptable effort, quite frankly, and probably was the final straw in terms of Coach Marvin Lewis being fired. The Vikings, meanwhile, had their eight-game winning streak snapped in a potential playoff preview at Carolina. Certainly no shame in losing at the Panthers. The Vikings will clinch the NFC North for the second time in three years with a win or tie. They also could clinch regardless of their result here as long as the Detroit Lions lose at home to Chicago on Saturday (not very likely) AND the Green Bay Packers lose or tie in Carolina on Sunday. I’m going to say Cincinnati shows a bit of heart here and only loses by 10.

  • Bengals are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 road games.
  • Bengals are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
Free NFL Pick: Bengals +11Best Line Offered: Bovada

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Bengals linebacker Kevin Minter said that the next three weeks will test the character of the team as it finishes out the season without a postseason berth. Still not clear if a handful of Bengals who missed the Bears game will play in Minnesota. That includes running back Joe Mixon, top linebacker Vontaze Burfict and cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick. They all suffered concussions in Week 13 in a loss to the Steelers. Cornerback Adam Jones is done for the year, landing on IR with a groin injury. Andy Dalton might as well not have played vs. Chicago, completing just 14 of 29 for 141 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. He was pulled for A.J. McCarron with 4:30 left. "We didn't have a lot of energy," Dalton said. "Offensively we didn't get that one play that gave us a spark." The Vikings’ Case Keenum came back to earth a bit vs. Carolina in getting picked off twice, although he did throw for 280 yards and two scores. Keenum will start moving forward, per Coach Mike Zimmer. The Vikings offensive line allowed 16 total pressures in Week 14, yielding three sacks, four hits and nine hurries, according to Pro Football Focus. The main problem, though, was the Minnesota defense being gashed for 216 yards and three touchdowns on the ground. That had been one of the NFL’s best rushing defenses.

  • Under is 12-5 in Bengals last 17 road games.
  • Under is 17-8-1 in Vikings last 26 games after accumulating more than 350 total yards in their previous game.
Free NFL Pick: Under 42Best Line Offered: Heritage

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