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Chargers vs. Bengals Prediction, Pick: Who wins in Week 13?

In a game with major AFC playoff implications, what is our pick and prediction for Week 13's Chargers vs. Bengals matchup?

The Cincinnati Bengals added another impressive win to their résumé with a Week 12 thrashing over the rival Pittsburgh Steelers. The Los Angeles Chargers did the opposite and fell flat against their division foe, the Denver Broncos. Both teams are in the conversation to grab a playoff spot, and there aren’t many weeks left to hit consistent form. Let’s take a look at the Chargers vs. Bengals Week 13 matchup, the NFL odds, and make a pick and prediction.

Los Angeles Chargers vs. Cincinnati Bengals pick, prediction | Week 13

  • Spread: Bengals -3 (Odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook)
  • Moneyline: Bengals -170, Chargers +150
  • Over/Under: 50.5

Week 12 brought totally opposite experiences for these two franchises. The Bengals produced arguably their most meaningful win of the season, while the Chargers had a complete and utter nightmare against the Broncos.

For the Bengals, going 2-0 against the Steelers is great not only for their pride but for tiebreaking purposes. That being said, consistency has been an issue, and while two wins over Pittsburgh is a success, the loss to the Jets and the ugly defeat to the Browns darken the glow.

However, the Bengals are now on a two-game win streak and seem to be piecing it together in a far better manner. Outstanding defensive performances two weeks in a row tells me they’re taking this season seriously and worked tirelessly to correct the mistakes that cost them the game against Cleveland. Since that loss, they’ve allowed just 13 points to the Raiders and 10 to the Steelers. Way to make a statement, Cincinnati!

The Chargers are mired in inconsistency

The Chargers, on the other hand, are trending in the wrong direction. The playoffs are beginning to appear over the horizon. This is not a good time to start falling apart offensively, especially when the defense can’t get off the field — unless it’s following a touchdown by the opposition.

The Chargers are allowing the fourth-most points per game. But they get away with it sometimes because the offense can score (and score consistently). They’ve won five of their six games by 6 points or less, and they had to score 38+ points to manage two of those victories.

Chargers vs. Bengals betting trends

The Chargers are 0-3 in their last three games against the spread, and they were the favorites in all three. They won one of those games, lost the other two, and failed to cover all three. However, the Chargers go into the Bengals game in Week 13 a 3-point underdog, something they’ve only been on two occasions all season. The Chargers have also only covered the over four times this season, and they’re 1-5 to the under when the total has been 50+ points.

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The Bengals are now 4-1 in their last five covering the over after starting the season 1-5. They’ve scored at least 31 points in five of their last six, and Cincy is benefiting from a multi-dimensional offense with efficiency in both the run and pass game. Cincinnati is also 6-5 against the spread.

Chargers vs. Bengals prediction

This is a fun game on paper for the neutrals. It’s Joe Burrow vs. Justin Herbert for the first time as pros. The Bengals certainly go into this one in finer form, and they’ll be motivated being only one game behind the Ravens in the AFC North.

The Chargers must figure it out and piece together multiple wins in a hurry, but this matchup is not a favorable one. The Bengals can drive their way down the field and consistently find the end zone. The Chargers cannot, and their defense doesn’t stop other teams from doing so. The Bengals win and cover, and I’ll take the under, too.

Chargers vs. Bengals Prediction: Bengals 30, Chargers 17

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