Cincinnati Bengals Set As Betting Favorite Over Denver Broncos In Second Pre-Season Game

August 14, 2010- By Jonathan Lowell

The Cincinnati Bengals still have a lot of kinks to work out of their new high-powered offense ahead of the 2010 NFL season. They will try to work those bugs out Sunday evening at home against the Denver Broncos.

The Bengals finished last season at the top of the AFC North division last season with a 10-6 record, and a perfect conference record of 6-0. They suffered a disappointing loss in the wild-card round of the playoffs to the New York Jets. It was a season of adversity for the team as the tsunami in American Samoa affected many players, and their injured wide receiver Chris Henry lost his life after a domestic dispute. Mike Zimmer also lost his wife unexpectedly. The Bengals look to use those tragedies as motivation in 2010.

In Josh McDaniels’ first season with the Broncos suffered an equally, if not more disappointing finish to last season. After starting the season 6-0 going into the bye week, they lost their next eight of ten games on the way to finishing 8-8 (3-3 in the division). Injuries at the beginning of the season have brought questions to the defense that will have to be answered before the start of the season.

The best USA sportsbooks have set the Bengals as three point favorites in the game despite losing their first pre-season game. The over/under for total points scored in the game by both teams is set at 32 1/2. Those setting pre-season Super Bowl XLV odds have set the Broncos’ and Bengals’ lines to win the championship game at +5000 and +2500 respectively.

Fans will notice a notable new face at wide receiver this season for the Bengals. Terrell Owens will be Carson Palmer’s new target, and he along with Chad Ochocinco will be causing NFL defensive coordinators headaches. Cedric Benson is resurrecting his career in Cincinnati, and will likely make the start Sunday. The 2010 Cincinnati Bengals team preview has Bernard Scott and Brian Leonard backing up Benson. Trying to stop the Owens and the Bengals will be the Broncos defense led by safety Brian Dawkins. Linebacker Elvis Dumervil suffered a pre-season setback with a torn pectoral muscle, and Mario Haggan will do his best to fill the void. The drafting of Roddick Muckelroy out of Texas is sure to help carry the load on the defense. Lineman Jarvis Green followed McDaniels from New England, and will surely make an impact.

Quarterback Kyle Orton will lead the Broncos on the field again in 2010 after a 3,802-yard passing season in which he threw for 21 touchdowns to only 12 interceptions. Tim Tebow should be featured in special ‘wildcat’ packages, but he has much to accomplish before he moves ahead of Brady Quinn. The 2010 Denver Broncos season preview lists several receivers that will try to fill the role of the departed Brandon Marshall. His counterpart for most of last season, Jabar Gaffney, will look to catch most of the balls from Orton next season. Knowshon Moreno missed a 1,000 yard season by 53 yards in 2009 and scored seven touchdowns. Meeting him will be Bengals linebackers Dahani Jones, and Rey Maualuga. Robert Geathers and Tank Johnson are the big bodies up front, and Pro Bowl safety Leon Hall will again be featured in the secondary.

The special teams of the Bengals lost the familiar face of Shayne Graham, and signed Dave Rayner and Mike Nugent to battle for the starting kicking role. The Broncos have Matt Prater, who is becoming one of the league’s best kickers. Royal and J.J. Arrington are expect to return kicks for the Broncos, while Quan Cosby was one of the top-five returners in the AFC last season.

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