Bengals small favorites over Browns in teams’ 2023 NFL opener; see other point spreads

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Cincinnati Bengals' Ja'Marr Chase (1) reacts after a first down catch during the second half of an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns, Sunday, Dec. 11, 2022, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Jeff Dean)

The Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals will open the 2023 season at Cleveland Browns Stadium on Sunday, Sept. 10. It should be one of the spotlight games on the NFL’s opening weekend, as the Bengals are expected to be a top contender for the Super Bowl and the Browns will have a new-look offense behind starting quarterback DeShaun Watson.

FanDuel Sportsbook‘s early Week 1 line has the Bengals as a 2.5-point favorite over the Browns. The total is currently set at 47.5. Cincinnati is betting at -130 on the money line, while Cleveland is at +110.

Cincinnati has become one of the top teams in the league behind an offense that features quarterback Joe Burrow, running back Joe Mixon and wide receivers Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins. The Bengals won the AFC in the 2021-2022 season and lost to the Los Angeles Rams 23-20 in Super Bowl LVI. Cincinnati almost made a return trip to the big game in the 2022-23 season but lost to the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game, also by a score of 23-20.

The Bengals and Chiefs will have their regular-season rematch on New Year’s Eve at Arrowhead Stadium. The early spread from FanDuel has the Chiefs as a 3.5-point favorite with the total points set at 50.5. Kansas City is the money line favorite at -176, while the Bengals are at +148.

Cincinnati is a top-five betting favorite to win Super Bowl LVIII with +1000 odds at FanDuel. Burrow is tied with Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen and Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes as the betting favorite to win NFL MVP at +700.

Other odds in the market have the Bengals as a 3.5-point favorite on Sept. 17 when they host Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens. Cincinnati is installed as a 7-point favorite when it hosts the Rams on Monday, Sept. 25 in a rematch of Super Bowl LVI. The Bengals travel to San Francisco on Oct. 29, when they are early 1-point underdogs against the 49ers, who are also a top-five betting favorite to win the Super Bowl. 

A week later, Cincinnati will be a 1-point favorite when it hosts the Buffalo Bills on Sunday night in a rematch of their AFC divisional playoff clash last year. The Bengals return to Monday night on Dec. 4 when they travel to Jacksonville to face the Jaguars. The early line has Cincinnati as a 1-point favorite.

Cleveland missed out on the playoffs after running into a tough stretch in the first half of the season when it lost six of seven to have a 3-7 record through Week 11. The Browns went 4-3 to close out the schedule and finish 7-10. But fans are excited about a full season of Watson at quarterback. FanDuel has Watson at +2500 to win the NFL MVP, making him a top-12 betting favorite.

Football fans are excited to see the Browns and Watson take on Lamar Jackson and the Ravens twice a year now. Cleveland is -1 at home against Baltimore on Oct. 1, and the Ravens are 3-point favorites for the Nov. 12 return game. 

Cleveland will play Houston on Christmas Eve, and Watson will have his first crack at his former team’s new franchise quarterback, C.J. Stroud. Early lines have the Browns as a 4-point favorite in that game. 

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