After an intriguing week one for both teams, the Ravens and Bengals are already playing one of their most important games of the year, which could be a deciding moment in the race for the AFC North title.
The Bengals are coming off of a tough week one loss to another division rival, the Cleveland Browns, while the injury bug has already bitten the Ravens, but both squads still have high hopes for the season, and Sunday’s matchup will be a huge win for one side.
Let’s look at the odds and see who will come out on top in this early, pivotal matchup.
Ravens vs Bengals Odds
NFL odds used for this Baltimore vs Cincinnati preview were found at FanDuel Sportsbook and are current as of September 11 at 11:30 PM ET.
- Moneyline: Bengals (-174) • Ravens (+146)
- Spread: Bengals -3.5 (-102) • Ravens +3.5 (-120)
- Total Points: Over 46 (-115) • Under 46 (-105)
- Implied Score: Bengals 24.75, Ravens 21.25
Ravens vs Bengals Predictions
Score Pick: Bengals 20, Ravens 17
These are two teams who were considered by many to be among the league’s best before the season started, but the season has not gotten off to a smooth start for either. The Bengals lost badly in a rainy opening-day matchup in Cleveland, in which they only scored a field goal.
Baltimore took home the win against a rebuilding Texans team and even covered the spread, but they picked up an almost unbelievable array of injuries.
The ground game took the biggest hit as running back J.K. Dobbins tore his Achilles tendon and is out for the season, while tackle Ronnie Stanley and center Tyler Linderbaum can be considered week-to-week. Marcus Williams is also out with a pectoral injury, leaving a huge gap at safety.
While the Bengals are coming off of an embarrassing performance, at least they’re doing so intact and playing at home. This shouldn’t be a banner day for the offense overall, as Cincy’s looked lost on opening day, and the Ravens will have to reimagine much of their approach with a diminished ground game that a single score could decide.
The Bengals should pull it out and pick up a massive first win of their 2023 campaign.
Ravens vs Bengals Best Bets & Props
Under 46 Points (-105)
FanDuel Sportsbook • WAGER: 2 units
This is absolutely going to be my NFL bet of the day, as the result for this one is a bit of a tough call, but one thing is for sure: the defenses are coming in with an advantage. Baltimore’s offense will revolve almost solely around QB Lamar Jackson, who did not have a big opening day.
He’s a super-talent and could pull it off in the long run, but it’s a big adjustment in one week against a good team.
As for the other side of the ball, the Bengals have a lot of talent but looked completely off in week one, and even with Williams out, Baltimore’s is one of the best in the league.
Bengals Win by 1-13 points (+125)
FanDuel Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit
This play protects you more than a spread in the case of a close finish and offers a much better payout than just grabbing Cincy on the moneyline. It’s hard to envision this team, which has gone to consecutive AFC Championship Games and even won one, dropping to 0-2 in front of the most raucous crowds in the sport.
Joe Burrow and his offense might not be firing on all cylinders, especially as a few days out, the weather looks like it will again be less than ideal, but they should be able to find the plays they need to win this game.
Bengals First To Score & First Quarter Moneyline (+140)
DraftKings Sportsbook • WAGER: 0.5 unit
There’s a chance Baltimore finds a way to scrape out the win in Cincinnati, but it’s unlikely that they get off to a strong start as they work on reimagining the offense. Conversely, the Bengals have every ability to come out firing and get a score before the Ravens’ defense can adjust.
That one score could be enough to maintain a first-quarter lead, and while this two-sided wager isn’t quite the lock of the day, it’s a great way to combine multiple factors that go well together to secure additional value.
Ravens vs Bengals Same Game Parlay
Ravens vs Bengals SGP (+170)
DraftKings Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit
- Ravens: Under 24.5 (-195)
- Bengals (-155)
- Bengals First Half -2.5 (-110)
There are no crazy odds here, especially with player props not yet available, perhaps due to the questions around Baltimore’s health, but this parlay pulls together a few factors that are likely to be heavily correlated.
The likelihood of a Bengals win is largely due to the injuries to the Ravens offense, so it’s worth pulling together a comfortable Ravens team under and the Bengals moneyline; it’s hard to imagine this game ending in a Bengals win where they allow more than 24 points.
As for the first-half line, this is not a good spot for Baltimore to come out hot, on the road, and incorporating several key new pieces.