The NFL is once again testing your devotion to its product with its Week 4 “Thursday Night Football” offering.
The Cincinnati Bengals are hosting the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars to kick off the week, and it’s a game that seemingly doesn’t offer much in the way of entertainment — or good football, really.
If you’re the betting type, though, there are plenty of opportunities for action on “TNF,” as there are for any game on the league schedule.
Here’s a quick betting preview for Jags-Bengals on “Thursday Night Football.” All lines are from DraftKings Sportsbook.
Jacksonville Jaguars at (-7.5) Cincinnati Bengals
As you might have guessed, the Bengals aren’t in this position very often — at least not recently. This is the first time since November of 2017 that Cincinnati has been a favorite of this many points. For what it’s worth — and honestly, it ain’t worth much — the Bengals are 2-2 against the spread in four games as favorites of a touchdown or more since 2017. This is our first chance to see the 2021 No. 1 pick, Trevor Lawrence, in primetime, and he’s still searching for his first win. It’s been a year of misery for rookie quarterbacks, with the first-year signal-callers going 1-9 straight-up and 1-9 ATS. That one win was one rookie QB (Mac Jones) and the New England Patriots beating another rookie QB (Zach Wilson) and the New York Jets in Week 2.
First-half line, total
Cincinnati -4.5, 23
First touchdown scorer
Joe Mixon +450
Ja’Marr Chase +700
Tyler Boyd +850
James Robinson +900
Marvin Jones Jr. +1200
Joe Burrow over/under 248.5
Trevor Lawrence over/under 254.5
Joe Mixon over/under 86.5
James Robinson over/under 52.5
Trevor Lawrence over/under 14.5
Ja’Marr Chase over/under 71.5
Marvin Jones Jr. over/under 70.5
Tyler Boyd over/under 62.5
DJ Chark Jr. over/under 48.5
PICK: Ja’Marr Chase OVER 71.5 receiving yards
That is a very high number, especially in a game with a relatively low total. Chase, however, looks like the real deal after very much putting his preseason drop issue in the rearview. The reigning Rookie of the Month is averaging 73 receiving yards per game, and he should see an increase from his 5.3 targets per game with the absence of Tee Higgins. Jacksonville has also been bad across the board, including pass defense where only Detroit is worse in EPA allowed per play. The Bengals haven’t been shy about taking shots with the rookie, targeting him five times on passes of 20 yards or more. Chase hauled in three of those for 126 yards, and Burrow’s passer rating on those attempts is 143.8. This has all the makings of a coming-out party for the No. 5 pick in the draft.