The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-7) play the Cincinnati Bengals (9-4) on Sunday, 18 at 16:25 at Raymond James Stadium. Exactly three wins lie between the teams ahead of this Week 15 matchup. The Cincinnati Bengals boast the better record out of the two, winning nine out of a possible 13 to go second in the AFC North. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers follow up in first place in the NFC South, with six wins to their account. Now we’re over the halfway point of the regular season, every game counts more than ever. There is simply no more room for error. With this in mind, along with everything else that is at stake, we’re expecting the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Cincinnati Bengals to put out all the stops for a much-needed victory.
Form Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers slipped to 6-7 for the season last week after falling to a 35-7 defeat against the San Francisco 49ers. They are 4-6 across their ten most recent games and 4-1 in the past eight at home.
Things haven’t improved on the offense front for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at all, having put just 15.6 points on board across the last five matches. In all, the offense has averaged 17.2 points for the season. The defense, on the other hand, hasn’t been as effective in putting the brakes on opposing offenses of late. In the past five outings, 20.6 points have been lost on average. This is more than the home team usually gives up, having allowed a decent 19.5 points per game this season.
As the reigning NFC South champions, a successful title defense is a priority for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers right now. By doing so, they’ll seal a playoff spot and a more favorable tie at home. They currently rank first in the division and fourth in the NFC Conference.
Form Cincinnati Bengals
Form is really looking good for the Cincinnati Bengals after claiming a 23-10 win against Cleveland Browns last week. The victory extended their winning streak to five matches, improving their regular season record to 9-4. They are also 4-3 on the road.
A strong offense has been a highlight for the Cincinnati Bengals this season. The unit ranks seventh in the NFL’s offensive ladder with 25.8 points per game and has put up 29.8 points in the last five matches alone. On the other side of the ball, the defense has remained decent by giving up 20.2 points in the previous five outings, which is more or less on par with the 20.4 points they’ve allowed per game over the course of the regular season.
For the Cincinnati Bengals, lifting the famous Vince Lombardi Trophy is the ultimate target. A spot in the playoffs come to the end of the regular season should be the bare minimum expected of them. After all, this is a team that finished first in the AFC North, won the AFC Championship, and came within a whisker of Super Bowl glory in the previous football season.
The Cincinnati Bengals bagged a 14-19 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the previous matchup between these two franchises. The encounter took place at the Raymond James Stadium in August 2021. Both teams have failed to claim the upper hand in this series in recent years, having claimed four wins apiece from their previous eight matchups
In their last eight head-to-head games, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers managed 19 points on average per game, while the Cincinnati Bengals put 18.88 points on board.
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Pick the Cincinnati Bengals to win (1.57) for your moneyline bet as they should be a lock on at these odds.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have struggled to get results against the away team in recent years, and while the home-field advantage is on their side at the Raymond James Stadium, that may not be enough. Instead, we like the look of the Cincinnati Bengals continuing their dominance in this series, having won four of their last five matchups in this series.
Back the Cincinnati Bengals -3.5 (1.91) for the best chance of a payout.
The Cincinnati Bengals open up as the 3.5-point favorites over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, according to the oddsmakers. This implies a tight battle is likely, with a road win possible but not by much. The eight most recent matchups in this series have seen an average points margin of 5.1 points.
Backing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to cover the spread looks like a red flag here, even on home soil. They’ve failed to cover the spread in their last three outings ahead of Sunday’s matchup. In their previous ten games, the home team went 1-8-1 ATS overall and 1-6-1 ATS in the last eight home games.
The Cincinnati Bengals, meanwhile, have covered the spread in five of their last six games on the road. In their past 10 matches, the away team went 9-1 ATS and also ended up 5-3 ATS from the eight most recent road trips.
Bet the Total over 42.0 (1.91) for this game.
The points total in matches between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Cincinnati Bengals tends to sway to the lower side, as they have averaged 37.88 points in their last eight meetings.
The total for the latest matchup of this series is set at 42.0, which is higher than the average 40.4 points total that the two teams have put up in their five most recent NFL encounters.
The total went under in the last three matches for the Cincinnati Bengals, who have an average total of 46.2 points points across their 13 points games for this season. The under market has paid out as the winning bet in each of the Cincinnati Bengals’ last 11 games.
The total has averaged 40.0 points in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ ten most recent games, as well as 36.8 points in their last five at home. Interestedly, the total has gone under in seven of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ past ten matchups against teams from the AFC North.