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Game Preview - Vikings underdogs vs Bengals at Cincinnati

Minnesota VikingsCincinnati Bengals
4-9-1December 22, 2013, 01:00 | Paul Brown Stadium9-5

The Cincinnati Bengals still lead the AFC North, but what was once a three-game advantage is down to one.

Cincy will try to stay a step ahead of surging Baltimore when it plays host to the Minnesota Vikings Sunday at Paul Brown Stadium.

The Bengals just had a three-game winning streak snapped Sunday at Heinz Field, dropping to 8-5-1 ATS on the season.

Minnesota, meanwhile, just put up 48 points in beating Philadelphia, and is 6-1 ATS over its last seven games.

As of early this week Cincy was favored by a touchdown over the visiting Vikes at 5Dimes.

They battle the Vikings, currently with a 4-9-1 mark (7-6-1 ATS). The over under records, important for totals bettors, are 8-6 for the Bengals and 11-3 for the Vikings.

View Minnesota Vikings vs Cincinnati Bengals Odds and Stats.

On the opening line for this matchup, the Bengals sat as -8-point favorites at shops such as 5Dimes. The total, meanwhile, has been pegged by the oddsmakers at GTbets.eu at 48.

The power rankings show a disparity between these teams, with the Bengals rated this week at No. 4 and the Vikings sitting at No. 25. It may or may not play a role in OddsShark score prediction models that turned out a 29-19 result in favor of the Bengals this week.

In their last action, Minnesota was a 48-30 winner at home against the Eagles. They covered the 7-point spread as underdogs, while the combined score (78) was profitable news for OVER bettors. Andy Dalton passed for 2 touchdowns in his team's last game, but it wasn't enough to overcome the Steelers, who won 30-20 on Sunday.

How They Match Up:
Offensively, the game matches up Cincinnati's No. 11-ranked offense (25.29 PPG) against a Vikings defense that ranks No. 31 at 30.36 PPG. The Bengals passing attack has averaged 250.71 yards per game, less than the Vikings give up through the air (290.57 YPG on average).

Defensively, the Vikings feature the league's No. 10-rated road run defense, allowing 103.57 yards per game. Cincinnati, meanwhile, ranks No. 16 in rushing offense at home.

A few Vikings at Bengals trends to consider:
Minnesota is 5-1-1 ATS in its last 7 games
Minnesota is 4-10-1 SU in its last 15 games
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Minnesota's last 6 games
Minnesota is 0-4-1 SU in its last 5 games on the road
Cincinnati is 15-7-1 ATS in its last 23 games
Cincinnati is 7-3 SU in its last 10 games
The total has gone OVER in 6 of Cincinnati's last 9 games
Cincinnati is 5-0 ATS in its last 5 games at home

Next up:
Minnesota home to Detroit, Sunday, December 29th
Cincinnati home to Baltimore, Sunday, December 29th