The last game of the NFL Preseason can be lackluster and difficult for both football handicappers and those making NFL picks. However, this AFC matchup has a little more riding on it for one team.
Indianapolis has yet to win this August (1-2 ATS) and for a team that is the defending AFC South champions, a winless preseason is not a good omen heading into when football counts and their chances of making the playoffs and beating the betting odds takes a hit without at least one victory.
Colts Seeking Answers
There is no panic around Indianapolis; they believe they have a good team and according to sportsbooks, they are the third choice to win the AFC behind Denver and New England.
For the most part, the defense has not looked good, thanks to sloppy tackling and missed assignments, which is not uncommon anymore with less hitting in the preseason. However, compared to the other AFC teams which made the playoffs a year ago, the Colts looked the worst of the six when the first teamers were playing for Week 3. Granted, New Orleans is an elite team, but they totally controlled both sides of the ball and made Indianapolis look like a team not ready to start the season.
While the first team probably will not see much action, one can assume coach Chuck Pagano would not want to head to Denver for Week 1 with his team having not tasted victory at least once.
Cincinnati Defense Has Been Suffocating
By those who watch the Bengals daily, after three games and roughly 4 ½ quarters, the Cincinnati first team defense has not permitted an opposing player to break the plane of the goal into the end zone.
While it is too early to say for certain, Cincinnati has the makings of an elite defense if they can stay relatively healthy.
The Bengals were 11-5 and 10-5-1 ATS and if Andy Dalton can come anywhere near what his new contract is worth, this team will continue to shine against the NFL odds and be play on material with the way the defense looks at the moment.
What to Look For
Coach Marvin Lewis was satisfied with his team earning their first win of the preseason at Arizona 19-13. For Cincy, this is going to be mostly about preparation, especially with just four days between games and he’ll take a long look at who earns a spots on the 53-man roster.
Indianapolis will not play many starters if at all, but as mentioned, nobody wants to go through camp without a victory and with the Colts a three-point favorite with a total of 42.5, the home team needing a win for confidence purposes should be the play with NFL picks.
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