Los Angeles Chargers at Cincinnati Bengals - 9/13/20 Game Day NFL Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Photo by Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Los Angeles Chargers (0-0) at Cincinnati Bengals (0-0)
NFL Football: Sunday, September 13, 2020 at 4:05 pm (Paul Brown Stadium)
The Line: Cincinnati Bengals +3 -- Over/Under: 41.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds
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The Los Angeles Chargers and the Cincinnati Bengals meet in a week 1 NFL matchup from Paul Brown Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The Los Angeles Chargers will try to shake off a disappointing 2019 season that saw the Bolts go from a 12-win team in 2018 to a 5-11 mark in 2019. The disappointment proved to be the final straw in the Philip Rivers era in Los Angeles as Rivers and the Bolts cut ties with the Chargers filling the void with Tyrod Taylor as the starter, but don’t be surprised if we see 6th overall pick Justin Herbert under center after being touted as the next star QB in the City of Angels. The Chargers will look significantly different for at least week 1 with Taylor under center, as Taylor is the polar opposite of Philip Rivers. Taylor can move around in the pocket and use his legs to extend plays or get out of trouble and a revamped O-line is sure to help as well. Austin Ekeler is back at running back after falling just three yards short of 1,000 rushing yards last season with 11 touchdowns while Keenan Allen is back at receiver after another pro bowl season with just under 1,200 receiving yards and 6 touchdowns. Mike Williams is back after establishing himself as one of the up and coming deep threats in the NFL after posting his first 1,000 yard receiving campaign and Hunter Henry could be poised for a big year at tight end. Defensively, Linval Joseph was brought in to improve a defense that was in the middle of the league against the run, while Chris Harris Jr. will help a secondary that was already top five in terms of defending the pass last season. Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram are back to cause havoc in the trenches while Casey Heyward and Derwin James will sit alongside Harris Jr in the Charger secondary.
The Cincinnati Bengals will be out to take a step forward in 2020 after finishing 2019 with the worst record in the NFL at 2-14, finishing with the first overall pick and thus kicking off the Joe Burrow era in Cincinnati. Burrow has Joe Mixon in the backfield as arguably the best player on the Bengals, and the receiving corps should be much better with former pro bowler AJ Green returning alongside Tyler Boyd, John Ross, Auden Tate and second-round draft pick Tee Higgins out of Clemson. On the defensive side of the ball, the Bengals completely retooled their unit, letting go of Dre Kirkpatrick and Darqueze Dennard and replacing them with guys like D.J. Reader, Mackensie Alexander and Vonn Bell. Geno Atkins and Carlos Dunlap are back on the defensive line as part of a solid Cincinnati defensive line alongside Sam Hubbard and Carl Lawson. The signing of Reader, Alexander and Bell combined with the draft choices of Akeem Davis-Gaither, Logan Wilson and Markus Bailey give Cincinnati plenty of options at linebacker while William Jackson III will be expected to anchor the Bengals secondary after going through a rough 2019 campaign but is primed to bounce back in 2020.
Los Angeles is 10-4-2 in their last 16 road games and 1-5-1 ATS in their last 7 games overall while the over is 5-0 in their last 5 week 1 matchups. Cincinnati is 3-11 ATS in their last 14 home games and 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games overall while the over is 7-3 in their last 10 week 1 matchups.
I’m not sure how keen I am on laying points with the Chargers on the road here especially when you see the positive vibes that bringing in a guy like Joe Burrow in motion. With that said, we’ve seen high hopes and optimistic vibes for other teams coming into the season in years past and it hasn’t panned out, I mean look at Cleveland with a talented lineup like Nick Chubb and OBJ. Sometimes it takes a while go get going and even with Tyrod Taylor under center, the Chargers are still solid offensively and have a really strong defense as well. I’ll lay the points with Los Angeles in this one.