Pick 3: Cincinnati vs. Baltimore and Dallas vs. San Francisco

Pick 3: Cincinnati vs. Baltimore and Dallas vs. San Francisco

The Teaser: Pair Cincinnati and Dallas

Game 1: Cincinnati vs. Baltimore

The Initial Line:

Cincinnati +1.5 away vs. Baltimore

The Take:

Add 8.5 points to Cincinnati’s line

The Final Line:

Cincinnati +10

The Breakdown:

Cincinnati’s 2013 campaign was going great with an 11-5 record until San Diego bounced them out of the playoffs on Wild Card weekend. They must have some confidence in Andy Dalton despite 3 consecutive playoff opening losses, as he got a 6 year contract extension worth $115 million. Baltimore had an average season at 8-8 and found themselves looking from the outside in at the 2013 playoff teams. Cincinnati finished with the 5th best passing and rushing defense last year, while Baltimore also had some success ranking 12th in passing defense and 11th in rushing defense.

This year I still give the edge to Cincinnati. They seem like a team poised to make another playoff run with Dalton and Green serving as a deadly offensive combination. Baltimore is a tough environment to play in, but that’s the only reason I’d see them as a favorite in this game. Remember Baltimore will be without Ray Rice for the first 2 games of the year, and will have to rely on Joe Flacco’s average play against a stellar Cincinnati defense. I could easily see Cincinnati winning this game outright, but taking them at +10 just gives them a unbelievable advantage. Time for Andy Dalton to show why he deserves his new contract, take Cincinnati here.

Game 2: Dallas vs. San Francisco

The Initial Line:

Dallas +6 home vs. San Francisco

The Take:

Add 8.5 points to Dallas’ line

The Final Line:

Dallas +14.5

The Breakdown:

Everyone keeps waiting for Dallas to break out and become a playoff contender, but once again we have to keep waiting. They finished 8-8 for the 3rd consecutive year and missed the playoffs despite Jerry Jones’ high hopes. San Francisco had a different yet arguably worse disappointment, as they lost in the AFC Championship game to Seattle after coming within 3 points of winning the Super Bowl against Baltimore in 2012. They seem to have a winning formula in SF, but just can’t execute the key drive on the biggest stage.

Dallas will enter this season like the past few seasons with hopes of a legitimate playoff run. San Francisco also has dreams of a Super Bowl victory behind the hand of Colin Kaeperneck. Dallas has been a strong team at home, as they went 5-3 last year but lost by a combined 6 points in the 3 losses. Jason Garrett and Co. have a lot of pressure on them to be successful, and with a home opener against San Francisco they have an opportunity to make a statement early. Expect Dallas to be highly competitive in this game. Even if San Francisco pulls away, taking them with 14.5 points ensures that we can still be victorious with a 2 TD loss. Take Dallas with the points in this game.

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