The Cincinnati Bengals have quietly put together a four-game winning streak and at 6-2, are starting to run away with the AFC North. The Miami Dolphins will attempt to slow them down when the two meet on Thursday night to kick off Week 9 in the NFL at SunLife Stadium.
The Bengals blasted the New York Jets 49-9 in a dominating performance as Andy Dalton put up 325 yards and five touchdowns, including four to Marvin Jones. Cincinnati were 5-of-6 in the red zone and when you convert inside the 20-yard-line, good things usually happen. The Bengals are now seventh in the league in passing, and the defense is ranked eighth against the run along with 11th against the pass. Don’t look now, but Cincinnati is creeping up the ranks in the AFC.
The 3-4 Dolphins lost a 17-3 halftime lead in a 27-17 loss in New England, committing three turnovers. Ryan Tannehill was sacked six times and threw two picks along with two touchdowns and 192 yards, but the rushing game was working, racking up 156 yards on the ground. The Fish have been free-falling since starting the season with three straight wins, and protecting Tannehill has to be their #1 priority: Miami has allowed the most sacks in the NFL with 32.
Cincinnati is favored by 2.5 points on the road, and they have lost three of their last five against the Dolphins, failing to cover the spread in four of those games. In Miami, the Bengals are 1-3 straight up since 1980, and they’re 1-1 against the spread. They have a good enough pass rush to get to Tannehill, and the Miami defense won’t be able to keep up with the receiving duo of Jones and A.J. Green, who is probably the second-best receiver in the NFL behind Detroit’s Calvin Johnson. Take Cincinnati to win while covering the spread.
Pick: Bengals -2.5