The 2020 season was a rough one for the Cincinnati Bengals. The team finished with a 4-11-1 record, and quarterback and first-overall pick Joe Burrow went down with a serious leg injury midway through the season.
This NFL betting recap shows that the Bengals did keep some of their games close, but the team had too many struggles to keep them competitive. This report also shows how Burrow’s injury quickly led the Bengals astray and made it even harder for them to win games.
The Bengals had a 9-7 record against the spread in 2020. The Bengals were consistent underdogs throughout the season, but they tried to keep games close.
— Cincinnati Bengals (@Bengals) February 16, 2021
Their first game against the Cleveland Browns had them at a +6 line, but the Bengals came close and lost 35-30. They were also +5.5 underdogs against the Philadelphia Eagles, but they tied 23-23 in the league’s only tie game of the season.
The most significant game against the spread came in the Bengals’ home game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Bengals were +14.5 underdogs for the match, but they pulled off a 27-17 upset against the Steelers.
The Bengals were also victims of some blowouts that went well beyond the spread. Their road game with Pittsburgh had the Bengals at +6.5. The Steelers won that game 36-10. The Bengals also failed to beat a +13.5 spread against the Baltimore Ravens in their last game of the season. The Ravens won that match 38-3.
The Bengals were 7-8-1 on the over/under. The team had one of the worst offenses in the league, as they scored 19.4 points per game. The offense was proficient when Joe Burrow was healthy, as they had thirty or more points with him in four games.
But the offense collapsed after his injury, as Brandon Allen and Ryan Finley struggled to produce on the field. The Bengals had six games where they scored ten or fewer points.
The defense wasn’t any better, as the club surrendered 26.5 points per game. Outside of a dominant performance by Jessie Bates III at safety, the Bengals allowed their opponents to keep moving down the field, scoring thirty or more points in seven games.
The over/under values started to drop after Burrow’s injury. The team saw an over/under of 40.5 in their 27-17 victory over Pittsburgh. There was also an over/under of 43 in their game against the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins won that match 19-7.
What to See in 2021
The Cincinnati Bengals are not expected to contend for anything in 2021. The team has a +8000 line to win Super Bowl LVI, and they have +2300 odds to win the AFC North. The Bengals’ division odds are the second-worst in the sport behind the Detroit Lions’ +2700 line to win the NFC North.
The 2021 season will hinge heavily on whether Burrow can recover from his injury. The team has a few high-value receivers in Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd, so that would help him.
The Bengals have a significant amount of cap space and the fifth-overall pick in the draft. Whether the team will spend that money on a new offensive line and some additional defensive support remains uncertain.
The Bengals will need to compete well and do more than beat the spread if they want to contend in 2021, especially since head coach Zac Taylor has what could be the hottest seat in the NFL.
Even though the NFL season is over, we will still be keeping our eye on what’s going on! Make sure you check all the latest information on our NFL hub page.
*Odds correct at time of writing.