Cincinnati Bengals (10-6-1) at Oakland Raiders (3-13)
|Date & Time||Sunday September 13, 2015, 4:25 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Oakland Raiders +3 -- Over/Under: 44.5
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The Bengals look to start the season with a victory on the road as they head into the Black Hole to take on the Oakland Raiders who are quietly escaping the league's basement and could make some noise this season.
The Bengals head into Oakland on Sunday looking to get back into the playoffs again this season and will rely heavily on a balanced running attack and a great defense to get there. Cincy will be led by Andy Dalton once again and while he hasn't put up massive numbers that people thought he might coming out of TCU he has been very consistent and if he can elevate his game this season and get a full 16 game slate out of AJ Green than the Bengals could be in a good spot. Jeremy Hill had a great rookie season and looks as though he has taken the starting role away from Gio Bernard but the two will form quite a tandem and give Dalton some lee way when it comes to offensive responsibility. However, heading into Oakland in week one could be a tougher task than people think as the Raiders have done some very nice things in the off season and always seem to play better at home.
The Raiders have long been the league doormat and while some skeptics are thinking that Oakland will once again land in the bottom five of the league standings I think they will surprise some people and perhaps spoil someone's playoff hopes. Oakland still needs some work in the secondary but throughout the field they have great play makers and while a season or two of growth is likely in the cards they are in a good spot this year and should come close to the .500 mark. Oakland gets a nice draw here as they start at home against a Cincy team who can be forced into being one dimensional and while this sort of looks lie a trap game for the Bengals as a small line may goad people into taking the road team I think the Raiders are in for a solid performance here and ultimately get the cover and may be even the win.