Buffalo Bills at Cincinnati Bengals Sunday NFL Betting Preview

Buffalo Bills at Cincinnati Bengals
Sunday, 10/2/11, 1:00 PM EST, TV:  CBS
Opening Point Spread:  Buffalo -3
Current Betting Line:  Buffalo -3
Opening Total:  44
Current Total:  43.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Cincinnati Bengals are three-point home underdogs against the Buffalo Bills Sunday

Buffalo is the talk of the AFC after coming away with a 34-31 win over the New England Patriots as seven-point home underdogs last week.  The Bills became the first team in NFL history to come back from deficits of 18-plus points in consecutive weeks.  “It feels good to be 3-0,” said Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick.  “That being said, we’re three games into the season and there’s still a lot of games to be played.”  It’s a surprising start considering the franchise was the NFL’s last team to win following an 0-8 start last year.  Buffalo is 17-15 ATS over the last two-plus seasons and 3-3 ATS as a favorite.

The Bills are off to their best start since opening 4-0 in 2008 and one victory away from matching last season’s win total.  Buffalo is ranked No. 1 in the league in scoring 113 points, while also being third in terms of total yardage.  An incredible turnaround from a team that ranked 28th and 25 respectively in those categories a year ago.  Fitzpatrick has been spectacular in tossing nine touchdown passes, completing 65 percent of his passes and entering the week with a 103.5 quarterback rating.

Cincinnati is 1-2 on the year and is coming off a 13-8 defeat to the San Francisco 49ers as 1.5-point home favorites.  The Bengals have actually out-gained all three of their opponents this year.  Rookie quarterback Andy Dalton has been solid in the beginning of the year, completing 61.4 percent of his throws for 570 yards, with three touchdowns and two interceptions.  One of his main targets has been another draft pick from this year, as A.J. Green has 15 catches for 194 yards and two scores.  Cincinnati is 16-20 ATS over the last two-plus seasons, but is 15-8 ATS as an underdog over that span.

The Bengals are still trying to gain an identity as a franchise, as veteran quarterback Carson Palmer and wide receiver Chad Ochocinco are no longer with the team.  Cincinnati has to get the ball in the hands of running back Cedric Benson, as the team is 11-1 when he carries the ball 25 or more times.  The only loss in that span was against the Bills last season when he had 124 yards on 25 carries.  The Bengals are tied for 24th in scoring and third in defense, while the team is also 13th in turnover margin at plus-one.  Head coach Marvin Lewis will be looking for his first victory in this series in six tries.

Bettors will likely back the Bengals due to their 5-0 ATS mark versus the AFC, while the favorite is 1-4 ATS in the last five meetings.

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