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Spread in Jets vs Bengals Moves from CIN +3 to +4.5 After Andy Dalton Named Starter Again

Andy Dalton throwing a pass in practice
Andy Dalton will be back under center when the 0-11 Bengals host the New York Jets in Week 13. Photo by Navin Rajagopalan (flickr)
  • Cincinnati reinstated Andy Dalton as starting quarterback
  • Surprisingly, the spread in the Week 13 Jets vs Bengals game ballooned from three to 4.5 in favor of New York
  • Dalton has struggled in 2019, but his numbers are still far stronger than Ryan Finley’s

The Cincinnati Bengals (0-11) have struggled all season, but even more so in in recent weeks with quarterback Ryan Finley running the show. The team is 0-3 and producing an average of just 11 points per game.

The offensive ineptitude led first-year head coach Zac Taylor to go back to veteran Andy Dalton at QB for the Week 13 matchup with the Jets.

New York Jets vs Cincinnati Bengals Odds

Team Spread Moneyline Total
New York Jets -4.5 (-105) -200 O 40.5 (-110)
Cincinnati Bengals +4.5 (-115) +170 U 40.5 (-110)

Odds taken November 25th

It has been tough sledding all year for Cincinnati, but especially in the last three weeks with Finley at the helm. He’s completed just 47.1% of his passes for only 158.0 yards per game, and the offense as a whole has followed suit. In his three starts, the Bengals put up just 10 points twice (vs PIT & OAK) and only 13 against the division-rival Ravens.

Dalton obviously wasn’t getting it done prior to his benching, but in comparison, he’s been a stronger passer than Finley. Taylor had to try something new with a winless record, and with an unproven rookie quarterback on the roster, seeing if Finley could provide a spark wasn’t necessarily a bad idea.

Then 0-8 with nothing to lose, there was a case to be made for throwing Finley against the wall and seeing if he stuck. However, the last three weeks have shown that Finley is, definitively, not the answer in Cincinnati.

Ryan Finley vs Andy Dalton Stats

Andy Dalton
Ryan Finley

3-4 Record Against the Spread 1-3
60.4% Completion Percentage 47.1%
281.5 Yards Per Game 158
9/8 TD/INT Ratio 2/2
79.2 Passer Rating 62.1

Why the Line Move?

The movement from +3 to +4.5 may seem strange, considering that Dalton’s numbers are better than Finley’s this year, but Monday’s news isn’t the only factor in this point spread.

The Bengal quarterback change doesn’t negate the fact that the Jets have been on a roll in the last three weeks. With strong offensive performances in wins over the Giants (34-27), Washington (34-17), and especially Sunday’s 34-3 blowout of the Raiders, the Jets have a ton of momentum.

Coming into a matchup with the 0-11 Bengals, it’s likely that bettors would have been all over New York, regardless of Cincinnati’s quarterback.

Additionally, while the Bengals may be better with Dalton, it’s not by much. His passer rating is higher than Finley’s, but it still sits at only 79.2. Dalton also has a higher completion percentage, but at 60.4%, it’s still not impressive at all. The Bengals are better against the spread with Dalton, but at 3-4, they still have a losing record. Finley’s three-game stretch has set the bar low, but make no mistake, Dalton hasn’t been great this season either.

After all, starting eight games to Finley’s three, Dalton has had much more to do with this woeful season in the first place. The winless hole has been dug, for the most part, with Dalton at the helm of the offense.

He’s running the show once again, but it would be shocking if these next four games aren’t the last for Dalton as the Bengal starter.

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