Bengals vs. Rams Odds & Picks: How to Bet This London Spread
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Jared Goff, Todd Gurley, Cooper Kupp
- The Cincinnati Bengals will face off with the Los Angeles Rams in the latest installment of the 2019 NFL London series.
- Our experts break down the betting odds and make their picks, complete with a take on the double-digit spread.
Bengals vs. Rams Odds & Picks
- Odds: Rams -13
- Over/Under: 47
- Kickoff: 1 p.m. ET
- TV Channel: CBS
- Location: London
Odds as of Thursday evening and via PointsBet, where Action Network users can access an exclusive promotion to get a 200% deposit match (deposit $50, bet with $150).
The bye week can’t come soon enough for the 0-7 Bengals. They teased bettors last week by hanging around for three quarters against the Jaguars, before a dreadful fourth from Andy Dalton and Co. ultimately did Cincy in.
The betting market doesn’t have much hope for the Bengals’ chances of bouncing back in London, as they’re getting just 24% of the bets as 13-point underdogs at the time of writing (see live betting data here).
Does Cincinnati have a chance to go toe-to-toe with the Rams for a full four quarters? Our experts analyze the matchup and pick out their favorite bets.
Bengals-Rams Injury Report
Which team is healthier? Rams
The Rams aren’t facing any key injuries for their matchup against the Bengals. They already ruled out RB Malcolm Brown (ankle), and they said CB Troy Hill (hamstring) is expected to be fine.
Cincy, on the other hand, has been one of the most injury-plagued teams all season. WR A.J. Green (ankle) will be out again and they’re expected to be without OL Cordy Glenn (concussion), along with CBs Dre Kirkpatrick (knee) and Darqueze Dennard (hamstring). — Justin Bailey
Note: Info as of Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff.
Rams Pass Offense vs. Bengals Pass Defense
Normally I write about how bad the Bengals are against running backs — and that’s certainly still the case — but in this week’s WR/CB piece, I give all three Rams wide receivers large upgrades because of their matchups, so it makes sense here to talk about the passing game in more detail.
First of all, the 0-7 Bengals are dust. There’s not one thing they do well, especially on defense, where they rank No. 31 with 6.4 yards per play allowed. They are No. 29 in overall pass defense (per Football Outsiders’ DVOA), but I think even that number is too high given their current circumstances.
The primary problem, as Justin referenced, is that the Bengals are severely injured at cornerback.
Kirkpatrick, the team’s No. 1 corner, missed last week and has yet to practice this week. He’s widely expected to miss at least another couple of weeks.
No. 2 corner William Jackson III (shoulder) missed last week. He practiced in full on Wednesday, which is highly surprising, given that just last week NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero reported that he would be unable to play for several weeks. I’m still doubtful that he will actually play this weekend.
And Dennard (slot corner) was just activated last week from the reserve/PUP list, where he had been stashed for the first six weeks of the season because of a knee scope. In his first game of action, he saw opposing slot receiver Dede Westbrook go off for 6-103-0 receiving on nine targets, and now, to add injury to insult, Dennard missed practice on Wednesday because of a soft-tissue issue. His status for Week 8 is uncertain.
So the Bengals — who already have a poor pass defense — could be starting three backup-level corners this week against perhaps the league’s best trio of wide receivers in Cooper Kupp, Robert Woods and Brandin Cooks.
Even if Dennard does play, he should be no match for Kupp, who has been targeted on a league-high 30% of his slot routes and is No. 4 among all slot receivers with his 2.20 yards per route (per Pro Football Focus). If Dennard is out, Kupp will likely run most of his routes against 2017 undrafted free agent Torry McTyer or 2918 fifth-rounder Darius Phillips, who have collectively allowed a 75.9% catch rate in limited action.
On the outside, Cooks will match up most with B.W. Webb, who opened the season in the slot and is now filling in at right corner for Jackson. Cooks has a significant speed advantage over the journeyman corner (4.33-second 40-yard dash vs. 4.51) and should be able to beat him deep.
As for Woods, he will match up most with 2016 undrafted backup corner Tony McRae, who has a 44.5 PFF coverage grade this year and has allowed an 80.8% catch rate for his career. A route-running technician, Woods should be able to spin McRae in circles.
And running backs Todd Gurley and Darrell Henderson and tight ends Gerald Everett and Tyler Higbee should also have success: The Bengals rank No. 28 in pass defense DVOA against both running backs and tight ends.
As much as quarterback Jared Goff has underwhelmed this season, he’s still averaged 314.5 yards passing over the past month. Against a poor and partial pass defense, he should dominate. — Matthew Freedman
Sean Koerner’s Projected Odds
- Projected Spread: Bengals -13.5
- Projected Total: 48.5
The Bengals burned me hard last week. They hung around with the Jaguars long enough that the +4.5 bet was +EV for most of the game. However, the flood gates opened toward the end and they ended up getting blown out.
Now I have nearly the same lines as the market, so I’m staying away from this one.
With the Bengals’ season swirling down the drain and Cincy very likely to go into its bye 0-8, it’s quite possible this turns out to be Andy Dalton’s last start as a Bengal. There’s a chance Cincinnati hands the reins over to fourth-round rookie Ryan Finley to see what they have in him before heading into the loaded 2020 draft with one of the top picks. — Sean Koerner
Freedman: Rams -13
The Bengals are probably not as bad as the Dolphins, but I’m not sure they’re significantly better, especially when you factor in Cincy’s aforementioned cornerback injuries and mismatch in the passing game for the Rams.
So I like the Rams anyway, and there’s just something about the London game. I think the problems bad teams have tend to be exacerbated with the travel and the neutral field.
Since the NFL International Series started in 2007, the London favorites are 17-9 against the spread (28% ROI). And regular-season favorites on a neutral field are 26-12-2 ATS (31.9% ROI).
I like the Rams at anything -14 or better. [In New Jersey? Bet now at PointsBet]