MNF Betting Picks – Buffalo Bills vs. Cincinnati Bengals

By Mike Rose

The big game of Week 17 is set to go off on Monday Night Football when Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills storm Paul Brown Stadium looking to get the best of Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals. This matchup of AFC heavyweights will go a long way in deciding playoff seeding with both teams gunning for the top spot. Buffalo enters Week 17 owners of the No. 1 seed having rattled off wins in six straight after just going into frigid Chicago and handing the Bears a one-sided defeat. On the flipside, Joey Brrr and co. have come out on top in each of their last seven matchups after just holding on to defeat the New England Patriots in Foxboro. Both teams are at the top of their respective games right now which had linemakers more or less lining this game a pick ‘em. I’m heavily invested in a number of futures odds that deal with both teams, so much will be decided for my bankroll on the final outcome of this tilt.


Buffalo Bills vs. Cincinnati Bengals

Date and Time: Monday, January 2, 2023 at 8:30 PM EST

Location: Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio

TV Coverage: ESPN


Betting Line


BetRivers Sportsbook initially had the Bills installed 1.5-point favorites with the total set at 49 for this crucial AFC clash. Though Buffalo has taken in 55 percent of the bets and 58 percent of the money, the number to beat has fallen in the direction of the Bengals who currently check in as short 1-point home underdogs. It marks just the second time Zac Taylor’s troops have caught points at home. The prior happening occurred against Kansas City back in Week 13 when they went on to defeat the Chiefs by a 27-24 final count. Buffalo’s gone off the board favored to win in all eight of its prior road clashes and stands 6-2 SU and 4-3-1 against the closing NFL odds in those contests.


Total bettors look to be enamored with the under regardless of 60 percent of the bets going the other way. A whopping 94 percent of the money expects points to be tough to come by. Even so, the number to beat has jumped up a half-point to 49.5. Buffalo and Cincinnati represent two of the best under bets the league has going with both teams combining to play to low scorers at a 19-10-1 clip.


Bet-Rivers-Banner-Sep-29-2022-03-57-25-53-PM-3Buffalo Bills


The Bills have proven to be one of the best offenses in the league through the first 16 weeks of the NFL betting season. Josh Allen is the navigator of the league’s No. 2 ranked offense that ranks seventh at both running (142.8 YPG) and passing the pigskin (259.5 YPG). It’s amounted to the NFL’s No. 4 ranked scoring unit that dents scoreboards for an average of 28.0 points per game. Only Seattle, Cincinnati, Minnesota, Philadelphia, and Dallas sport lower yard per point averages. Devin Singletary and James Cook could have issues on the ground against Cincy’s No. 7 ranked run defense, so it will be up to Stefon Diggs, Gabe Davis, and Dawson Knox to get things done through the air with Cincy’s No. 21 ranked pass defense a bit more susceptible to giving up chunk plays.


Cincinnati Bengals


Since splitting its first eight games, the Bengals have been on a tear taking down the likes of the Panthers, Steelers, Titans, Chiefs, Browns, Buccaneers, and Patriots to catapult itself back into the discussion for the AFC’s top overall seed. It’s done so by lighting it up on offense and playing a stifling brand of defense. Joe Burrow continues to be calm, cool, and collected in the pocket regardless of his O-Line allowing him to get thrown to the turf an eye-opening 42 times (No. 25). Buffalo is the owner of the league’s tenth ranked pressure rate (34.8%), so the front wall will need to thwart a concerted attack to allow for success moving the football. A poor rushing attack (No. 26) must be overcome by its top-five ranked passing attack paced by Ja’Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, and Tyler Boyd for Cincy to protect its house.


The Wager


I’ve thrown fliers on Josh Allen winning the MVP, Buffalo winning the AFC, Cincinnati winning the AFC North as well as the AFC at a much juicier price than the Bills. With those four bets alone, I’ve got much tied into the end result of this game. As much as I want to believe my 12-1 ticket on Allen winning the MVP is live, I can’t help but take notice as to how dominant the Bengals have been over the course of their resurgence. Though Buffalo has passed most of its stiffer road tests with wins tallied against the Ravens and Chiefs, I can’t for the life of me understand why they’re laying points in this matchup. Cincy is locked in right now and has the look of a team that can and will get back to the big game. At home with the world watching, look for Burrow to once again come through and lead his team to the pivotal win that betters its chances of attaining the conference’s No. 1 seed.


Bet the MNF matchup between the Bills and Bengals at BetRivers Sportsbook