The 7-6 Cincinnati Bengals are struggling of late, losing two in a row with a 2-4 record in their last six games. They head to Denver in a pivotal AFC matchup to take on the 7-6 Broncos in a matchup with massive playoff implications.
Both teams will need a win to stay in the playoff race. On paper, the Bengals have the advantage, especially at quarterback with Joe Burrow over Teddy Bridgewater. Bridgewater has really limited a passing game filled with studs like Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton, Noah Fant, and Tim Patrick.
The Broncos have leaned on their dynamic duo at running back in Javonte Williams and Melvin Gordon. The Bengals have a strong running game as well, as Joe Mixon is in the middle of a career season with 1,036 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns.
Can Burrow and the Bengals get back on track with a road win against an inferior opponent? Or will the Broncos continue to lean on their running game to get stay alive in the playoff race?
Let’s dive into our Bengals vs Broncos predictions to see why Cincinnati has the edge in this NFL Week 15 matchup.
Please note that all NFL Week 15 odds and lines are current as of 12:00 p.m. ET on Friday, December 17.
Bengals vs Broncos Prediction
It was encouraging for the Bengals to see Burrow play well while dealing with an injured finger last week, as the second-year quarterback completed 25-of-34 passes (73.5%) for 348 yards (10.2 Y/A) with two touchdowns. Cincinnati needs to lean on their passing game if they’re to get back on track.
The Broncos seem to have decided that their best course of action on offense is to limit Bridgewater, who only attempted 25 passes in their blowout win against the Lions last week. Bridgewater will need to air it out more against the Bengals if Denver is to win this game.
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I just can’t get past this massive advantage at quarterback for the Bengals. While Denver has been solid against the pass this season, allowing 6.9 yards per attempt (T-9th in NFL), I think Burrow should be able to do enough to get the job done here.
The Bengals have a good pass-rush, putting up 37 sacks, which works out to 2.8 sacks per game (T-2nd in NFL). They should be able to get to Bridgewater and make it difficult for the Broncos’ passing game.
The Broncos have also beaten up on bad teams this season with wins against the New York Giants (4-9), Jacksonville Jaguars (2-11), New York Jets (3-10), Washington Football Team (6-7), and Detroit Lions (1-11-1).
Prediction: Bengals 23, Broncos 17
Bengals vs Broncos Best Bets
Best Bet: Bengals Moneyline (+140) at Caesars
Wager: 2 Units
The Bengals are the better team, and we’re getting them at plus money. They’re now three-point underdogs, so it’s better to just take the extra value and bet them to win outright. Cincinnati’s pass rush is likely to wreak havoc on this Broncos’ offensive line.
The Bengals have a +61 point differential, which ranks 8th in the NFL. They’re coming off two tough losses against playoff contenders like the Los Angeles Chargers and San Francisco 49ers. The only reason to take the Broncos here would be to bet on home-field advantage.
Look for the Bengals to get back on track in our NFL bet of the day.
Best Bet: Under 44 Total Points (-110) at Caesars
Wager: 2 Units
This game has one of the lowest totals on our NFL gameday odds, but I still like the Under because of how I think the Bengals pass rush will cause problems for the Broncos’ passing game.
The Under is 10-3 in Broncos games this season, and I don’t expect much to change in this game. These are two of the slowest-paced teams in the NFL.
Expect a low-scoring game with the Bengals squeaking it out by one score.
Frank Ammirante’s 2021 NFL Betting Record: 22-11, +18.47 Units
Thanks for reading our Bengals vs Broncos Predictions! For more NFL betting tips, check out our NFL Week 15 Best Bets.