Things could’ve been different after Sunday Night Football. The Las Vegas Raiders were a field goal miss away from having to take on its rival in the Kansas City Chiefs. Yes, that’s how chaotic Week 18 was.
The Las Vegas Raiders and Los Angeles Chargers were both headed to the playoffs if Sunday Night Football’s game concluded as a tie. After full regulation, the Chargers and Raiders went to overtime.
The Raiders kicked a field goal and the Chargers answered. But after that, it was the Raiders who won the game with a game-winning field goal as time expired. That field goal put the Raiders in the AFC Wild Card Playoffs. The Raiders will now take on the Cincinnati Bengals, in Cincinnati.
Can the Raiders play well enough on the road to upset the Bengals in the postseason? Tune in to NBC at 4:30 EST this Sunday to find out.
Please note that all NFL Wild Card odds and lines are current as of 4:30 p.m. EST on Friday, January 14.
Raiders vs Bengals Prediction AFC Wild Card Playoffs
The Cincinnati Bengals ended up losing to the Cleveland Browns in the final week of the season. But that’s fine. Joe Burrow, Joe Mixon, and plenty of other starters sat out of the game to prepare for the playoffs.
Mixon, of course, is recovering from COVID but should be well enough to return to action against the Raiders. He was already activated from the COVID-19 reserved list along with six other players.
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The Bengals have played lights-out offensively with Joe Burrow under center.
Across Week 17 and Week 18, Burrow and the Bengals scored 75 in two games to beat the Ravens and Chiefs. Those two wins were basically playoff games as the Bengals were fighting to win the AFC North.
With a 10-7 record, the Bengals ended up winning one more game than the Steelers and the Bengals became AFC North Champions.
On the other hand, the Las Vegas Raiders finished the regular season with four straight victories. However, those victories were due to playing against poor offenses.
The Raiders started their win streak against the Cleveland Browns and Denver Broncos, who were both playing backup quarterbacks in those games.
Then the Raiders took on Carson Wentz, who was coming off a stint with COVID. Lastly, the Raiders almost choked away a massive lead against the Chargers but prevailed late in overtime.
The Raiders have a healthy Darren Waller back, but he only caught two passes in his first game back despite being targeted nine times. So there’s still some rust there.
Therefore, I’m not sure the Raiders will be able to keep up with the Chargers. However, I still think this game easily climbs over the total.
Prediction: Bengals 38, Raiders 24
Raiders vs Bengals Best Bets
Best Bet: Bengals -5.5 (-110) at Caesars
Wager: 1 Unit
As long as Joe Burrow is healthy, the Bengals are one of the most dangerous offenses in the NFL. Because of this, head coach Zac Taylor is the favorite to win the Coach of the Year award,
On top of that, Ja’Marr Chase broke the single-season receiving yards record as a rookie. There’s just so much to like about this offense for the Bengals.
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Now, the offensive line hasn’t been great, and the Raiders are absolutely capable of earning sacks in this game on the back of Maxx Crosby, but Burrow could drop back on 3rd-and-20 and you’d still be sitting there confident that he’ll make a play for a first down.
When the Raiders started a winning streak, Las Vegas scored 16 on Cleveland and 17 on Denver. The Raiders also scored just 23 against the Colts.
No matter how bad the Bengals are, they’ll get a stop or two against the Raiders and that’ll help them get out in front.
Take the Bengals for our NFL bet of the day.
Check out more of our Raiders vs Bengals Predictions
Best Bet: Over 48.5 Total Points (-110) at Caesars
Wager: 1 Unit
Have you watched the last two weeks with Burrow under center?
In Week 16, the Bengals beat the Ravens 41-21. Then in Week 17, the Bengals beat the Chiefs, 34-31.
The Bengals offense is dangerous but the defense is terrible. The Bengals have allowed players like Mike White to look like an actual star.
With the Raiders healthy on offense and the Bengals shattering records at a rapid pace this season, I’ll take the Over between these two teams.