NFL Week 13 Picks: Cincinnati Bengals vs. San Diego Chargers

Cincinnati Bengals at San Diego Chargers
Sunday, 12/2/12, 4:25 PM EST, TV:  CBS
Opening Point Spread:  San Diego -1
Current Betting Line:  Cincinnati -1.5
Opening Total:  47.5
Current Total:  46
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

Chargers vs. Broncos NFL Preview
The San Diego Chargers have struggled mightily to get things going during the 2012 NFL season

Cincinnati is head to San Diego this week with a three-game winning streak and its playoff destiny back under its control, as it comes off a 34-10 blowout victory over the Oakland Raiders as 9.5-point home favorites.  “That anticipation comes down to these last five games now, and what they mean and how important they are,” stated Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis.  The Bengals have won three consecutive games by 18 or more points for only the second time in franchise history.  Cincinnati is 4-2 ATS as a road favorite of three points or less since 2010, which is important to consider when making your NFL picks against the spread on Sunday.

The Bengals will try to get the ground game going again, as they’ve won all seven games when rushing for at least 130 yards during the Andy Dalton era.  The second-year quarterback has compiled a 117.2 passer rating in the last three games, while throwing nine touchdowns and zero interceptions in that span.  Cincinnati has outscored its opponents by a 62-12 margin in that span.

San Diego will play the second of three consecutive games against teams from the AFC North, as it comes off a 16-13 setback to the Baltimore Ravens as 1.5-point home underdogs.  The Chargers have lost six of their last seven games, while getting out-gained by a triple-digit margin in the last two weeks.  “We’ve lost a lot of guys throughout on offense and defense,” stated Chargers tackle Jared Gaither.  “Obviously, it affects you in certain situations.”  San Diego is 0-2 ATS as a home underdog of three points or less, which can’t be ignored when looking at the Week 13 pro football odds.

The Chargers are still led by quarterback Philip Rivers, who has thrown for 2,689 yards through the season’s first 11 games, as he’s on pace to collect his fifth-straight season of 3,500-or-more passing yards.  San Diego is still mathematically alive for a AFC wild card spot, but it will likely need to win out to make that a possibility.  The entire game may come down to the offensive line’s ability to protect rivers, as Cincinnati ranks second in the NFL with 35 sacks on the season.

Sports bettors will likely play the total in this affair, as the OVER is 7-0-2 in the last nine meetings in this series.

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