The Cleveland Browns are scheduled to face the Cincinnati Bengals on the road in an early Sunday afternoon game in Week 14 of the 2022 NFL season.
Let’s take a look at our Browns vs. Bengals odds, as well as a prediction.
NFL Odds: Point Spread, Moneyline, Total
Here are NFL odds from around the sports betting marketplace.
Browns-Bengals Battle of Ohio in Week 14
The Bengals are coming off a 27-24 home victory against powerhouse Kansas City on Sunday, giving Cincinnati and QB Joe Burrow their third consecutive victory over QB Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs since Jan. 2 — and all as an underdog. Included is last season’s AFC title game victory in KC (also by 27-24) as a 7-point dog.
Yet, Burrow and the Bengals can’t seem to beat the Browns, going 0-4 in his three-year career (he sat out last year’s season-ending loss) and suffering their most lopsided losses of 2021 and this year against Cleveland. First was a 41-16 blasting in Week 9 last year. Then, six weeks ago, the Browns won 32-13 as a 3-point underdog in Cleveland. Go figure.
In that Week 8 game in Northeast Ohio, the Bengals rushed only 10 times (the third-fewest for any team in a game this year) for 36 yards and were outgained by 211 overall. Back then, Cleveland (5-7 straight up/6-6 against the spread) was led by QB Jacoby Brissett. But now that Deshaun Watson’s NFL-enforced 11-game suspension has expired, he’s Cleveland’s new No. 1 quarterback.
The Browns also were victorious last week, winning at Houston 27-14, but they were hardly impressive offensively in Watson’s debut against a defense that ranks 28th in the league. Cincinnati is 12th.
Cleveland’s three touchdowns were the result of two defensive scores and one coming on a punt return. Watson’s passer rating of 53.4 was the worst in his 54 career starts dating back to 2017 while with the Texans.
As for the Bengals, with the exception of that recent loss to Cleveland, they’ve won eight of their past nine games and covered the spread in each one. They are 8-4 in the standings, as is Baltimore atop the division.
Cincinnati’s 9-3 ATS record this season is tied with the NY Giants for the best in the league. And counting the Bengals’ late-season surge last season, they have gone 17-3 ATS since Week 15 of 2021.
Cleveland, meanwhile, is trudging through its second-straight disappointing season and is two games out of the AFC wild-card mix with five games to go.
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Browns vs. Bengals NFL Prediction
One key to Cincinnati’s recent surge is its stellar pass protection.
In that Week 8 loss to Cleveland, Burrow was sacked five times. But in his four games since, he has gone down on a total of six occasions. That’s a remarkable improvement considering he was sacked a league-high 70 times last season, with 19 coming in four playoff games.
Cleveland, meanwhile, has had only six sacks its past four games.
Also, Cincinnati’s running game has thrived since that debacle in Cleveland, averaging 141 yards a game — even without rushing leader Joe Mixon (questionable, concussion), who was sidelined in Weeks 12 and 13. Veteran backup Samaje Perine, 5-foot-11 and 235 pounds, bulldozed his way to 106 yards on 21 carries versus KC last week.
Then there’s the return of standout WR Ja’Marr Chase after he missed Games 8-11, including the one versus Cleveland with a hip injury. He caught seven of eight targeted throws for 97 yards last week. In 2021, his norm was 18.0 yards on his 81 receptions, the second-highest average for any receiver with at least 25 catches.
Another guy who is back for the Bengals is star nose tackle DJ Reader, who missed seven games with a knee injury. He also didn’t play in that loss to Cleveland.
As for Watson, analysts harped on the fact that it’s hard to return to play after a gap of 700 days between starts. Those analysts also lambasted him over having so many poor throws against the Texans, including several at the feet of receivers.
Unless RB Nick Chubb, second on the rushing chart, carries the load, the Browns could be stifled again. He had only 80 yards against Houston, which has by far the worst rush defense in the league (169.1 yards a game).
This appears to be a game the Bengals end their five-game skid versus the Browns.
Prediction: Bengals 30, Browns 14