Minnesota Vikings vs Cincinnati Bengals Predictions Week 1 – NFL Pick of the Day 

Last Updated: Sep 10, 2021

The Minnesota Vikings and Cincinnati Bengals both missed the playoffs in 2020, but they are in very different places entering 2021.

The Vikings have high expectations, and based on the history of head coach Mike Zimmer’s tenure, 2021 will be a playoff year for them — and it better be. The season opener will bring Zimmer’s return to Cincinnati, where he was defensive coordinator under Marvin Lewis from 2008-2013.

The Bengals, on the other hand, are building under third-year head coach Zac Taylor. Quarterback Joe Burrow looked like he belonged before going down to a major knee injury during his rookie season, and the offense looks quite good if the offensive line can protect Burrow. The defense is still a work in progress for Cincinnati.

Best Bet: Minnesota Vikings -3 (-110) at DraftKings

For in-depth analysis on this NFL bet of the day and others, continue reading. Please note that all odds are current as of 5 PM EST on Friday, September 10.

Sportsbook Play of the Day

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Read Chris Wassel’s Caesars Sportsbook review for more insight and get your welcome bonus below, or continue reading the NFL pick of the day series for our best Minnesota vs Cincinnati tipster picks.

Vikings vs Bengals Prediction

Burrow should be ready to go for Week 1, but he’ll likely be a little rusty in his first game action since tearing his ACL. Top to bottom the Vikings are the better team, even with the annual questions about their offensive line that aren’t going away.

Outdoor road games tend to be a bugaboo for the Vikings, but it’s only September. This game could be high-scoring, and the Vikings have won seven of their last eight games as road favorites — something that’s reflected in the NFL gameday odds.

For that reason, it would be wise to take Kirk Cousins and the Minnesota Vikings in a close one over Burrow’s Bengals. There are simply too many questions about Cincinnati right now to comfortably pick them to earn an upset victory.

Betting Pick: Vikings 27, Bengals 23

Cincinnati Bengals

Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals will look to begin their 2021 campaign with a win over the visiting Minnesota Vikings in Week 1.

Vikings vs Bengals Best Bets

Best Bet: Minnesota Vikings -3 (-110) at DraftKings

I love the Vikings as a three-point favorite on the road. Home field advantage generally tilts the spread three points, so if this were a home game for Minnesota, they might be a six-point favorite (which would be a little rich to bet in that case). But give me three points all day here.

The road team has also covered in each of the Bengals’ last seven Week 1 games, which is another reason why this is our pick of the day.

The Vikings may struggle to protect Cousins until further notice, but the Bengals are not in position to take full advantage of Minnesota’s weak offensive line. Moreover, their secondary will surely struggle to cover wideouts Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen.

The Vikings’ defense will be better this year, but in the front seven they aren’t particularly deep. The Bengals should be able to move the ball well enough to keep the game competitive, as they sneakily did in many games last year.

Best Bet: Bengals Moneyline (+150) at DraftKings

While I think the Vikings will win and cover, a moneyline bet on them is not a wise investment on its own.

However, a possible moneyline bet on the Bengals stood out to me. In a game that could be won in small margins, a contrarian bet on the home underdog to win outright is a calculated one.

Be sure to shop around on this pick, as Cincinnati’s moneyline odds seem to vary between sportsbooks.

Best Bet: Tyler Boyd Over 49.5 Receiving Yards (-115) at DraftKings

Tyler Boyd is one of the most underrated wide receivers in the NFL, and his matchup in the slot against Vikings cornerback Mackensie Alexander will be one worth watching on Sunday.

If I could, I’d set a target total Over/Under for Boyd on Sunday at 7.5, and I’d easily take the over. Burrow will look his way plenty, especially in light of Ja’Marr Chase’s preseason struggles, and he’s simply a better player than Alexander.

Feel comfortable leaning on the Burrow-Boyd connection here.

Vikings vs Bengals Same Game Parlay Picks

  • Vikings -3 (-110) at DraftKings
  • Total Over 47 (-110) at DraftKings
  • Tyler Boyd Over 4.5 Receptions (-120) at DraftKings
  • Adam Thielen Anytime TD Scorer (+125) at DraftKings
  • Ja’Marr Chase Under 3.5 Receptions (+130) at DraftKings

It’s not hard to see where the inspiration for my parlay ticket comes from. In addition to my score prediction for this matchup, I also explained why I’m a bit higher on Boyd than I am Chase right now. Moreover, Thielen scoring a touchdown at (+125) odds is a good get considering the secondary he’ll be up against.

At (+2302), it may be worth sprinkling a little on this parlay.


Brad Berreman

Brad joined The Game Day in August of 2021. He is also a current contributing writer at FanSided, Rotowire, Going For2, NFL/NBA Analysis Network and Bruno Boys Fantasy Football. Follow him on Twitter @bradberreman24.

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