San Diego Chargers vs. Cincinnati Bengals Betting Odds, Wild Card Pick, Analysis ColumnistDecember 31, 2013

SAN DIEGO, CA - DECEMBER 1:  BenJarvus Green-Ellis #42 of the Cincinnati Bengals runs the ball against the San Diego Chargers during their game on December 1, 2013 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)
Donald Miralle/Getty Images

The Cincinnati Bengals are on a dominant 11-1 run at home, both straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS), but they also have a money-losing 0-5 skid both SU and ATS in the postseason.

The San Diego Chargers arrive on ATS win streaks of 8-3-1 as an underdog and 3-1 on the road in the playoffs. They are also the Wild Card Weekend’s biggest underdog but also its most tempting dog pick.


Bengals vs. Chargers point spread: Bengals opened as seven-point favorites; the total was 49.5. (Line updates and matchup report)


Odds Shark computer prediction: 28.6-24.2 Bengals


Why the Chargers can cover the AFC Wild Card spread

Revenge is always a good motivator, and the Chargers will look to exact some against Cincinnati, which was the last team to beat them, 17-10 at San Diego back on Dec. 1.

Last week’s win over Kansas City revealed the Bolts’ mettle, so they’ll arrive in Cincinnati with plenty of momentum and seven points to play with at the betting window. They have shown a knack of winning on the road in January and of winning as an underdog, according to the Wild Card trends report at Odds Shark.


Why the Bengals can cover the AFC Wild Card spread

Quarterback Andy Dalton’s maturity and resilience became evident last Sunday when he overcame four interceptions to throw for two touchdowns and run for an additional one in a 34-17 victory over the defending Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens. He broke Carson Palmer's franchise records with 33 touchdowns and 4,296 yards on the year.


Smart Pick

As good as the Chargers have been this season—both at home and on the roadthe Bengals are a dominant home team. The AFC North champions scored 49, 41, 42, 42 and 34 points in their last five games at Paul Brown Stadium and went 8-0 at home in 2013.

The computer is calling this one close, and it is tempting to bet against Dalton, who threw four interceptions on the weekend.

The over is also tempting based on recent form of both teams and on the fact that the over has been 7-2-1 in their past 10 meetings.

Play the Chargers at plus-7.



  • Bengals 0-5 SU and ATS in the past five playoff games.
  • Bengals are 5-1 ATS vs. the Chargers since 2002.
  • Over is 7-2-1 in the past 10 meetings.
  • Chargers are 8-3-1 ATS in the past 12 games as underdogs.
  • Bengals are 11-1 SU and ATS in the past 12 home games.
  • Chargers are 3-1 ATS in the past four playoff road games.


Note: All spread and odds data powered by Odds Shark. Follow us on Twitter for injury updates and line move updates.