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Bengals favored in Pittsburgh for first time since 1989

Cincinnati Bengals v San Diego Chargers Getty Images

For the time since Boomer Esiason quarterbacked the Bengals, the Steelers are poised to be home underdogs against visiting Cincinnati on Sunday night.

Various Nevada sports books have AFC North-leading Cincinnati (9-4) as a 2.5-point favorite at Pittsburgh, which is on the fringes of playoff contention at 5-8.

We have go all the way back to Oct. 8, 1989 to find Cincinnati in the role as favorites in Pittsburgh. On that day, the Bengals (-3.5) defeated the host Steelers 26-13 on the AstroTurf at Three Rivers Stadium.

Since then, it’s been the same story: the visiting Bengals are underdogs, and usually big underdogs at that. In the last 23 matchups between the clubs in Pittsburgh, the Steelers have been favored by an average of about 7.3 points, according to data from the Jim Feist and Marc Lawrence point spread archives.

The Bengals have played the Steelers tough in Pittsburgh in recent years, winning five of the last 10 matchups, including last season’s meeting. They have been underdogs of 5.8 points on average in those 10 games, according to Lawrence data. By contrast, the Bengals were underdogs of an average of 8.6 points in Pittsburgh from 1990-2002, per Feist archives.

A season ago, the Bengals were 3.5-point underdogs at Pittsburgh. Now, it’s the Steelers who will try to be upsetters on their home field for the first time since a truly golden age of music was captured via the magic of cassette tape.

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20 Responses to “Bengals favored in Pittsburgh for first time since 1989”
  1. turtlehut says: Dec 13, 2013 9:08 AM

    Unfortunately for Cincy they have Ed Hochuli’s crew officiating instead of Jeff Triplett’s.

  2. dcapettini says: Dec 13, 2013 9:15 AM

    Go Steelers! Do you know how hard it is for me to write those words? Baltimore has a better chance of winning the division now than getting a wild card. But, we need the Steelers to do their part.

  3. GenoAtkinswillnotbestopped says: Dec 13, 2013 9:23 AM

    Stay focused fellas, get it done.

  4. steelcurtainn says: Dec 13, 2013 9:28 AM

    Favored only to see the Bengals lose.

  5. ranoversquarells says: Dec 13, 2013 9:31 AM

    Come on Pitt!

    Help the Pats secure a playoff bye with a victory.

  6. flaccodelic says: Dec 13, 2013 9:52 AM

    Wait- so as a Ravens fan it’s in my team’s best interest that Steelers win this weekend?

    Nope, can’t root for them. Go Bengals!

  7. dcstinks says: Dec 13, 2013 9:54 AM

    Go Bengals! #steelersblow

  8. Joemontanaflacco says: Dec 13, 2013 10:03 AM

    How ironic. A Steelers win actually helps the Ravens.

  9. kylezombie says: Dec 13, 2013 10:09 AM

    Ironically, the Bengals typically have more success in Pittsburgh than they do in Cincinnati against the Steelers.

  10. thegenoatkinsdiet says: Dec 13, 2013 10:16 AM

    First time in a while… but not the last time in the foreseeable future

  11. galatians62 says: Dec 13, 2013 10:18 AM

    We got 99-Problems but the Steelers ain’t one (Jay-Z voice) Bengals 27, Steelers 17

  12. crownofthehelmet says: Dec 13, 2013 10:56 AM

    After Sunday, Bengal fans will refer to this as their Reality Check. When they once again come crashing down, and get throttled by a superior Steeler team.

  13. olcap says: Dec 13, 2013 11:10 AM

    Stealers have a cheater for a head coach for the first time in their history.

    They also haven’t fired the cheater, so that makes the whole organization stink.

  14. citizenstrange says: Dec 13, 2013 11:20 AM

    Milli Vanilli reached the highest pinnacles of success with no real talent. They were frauds and imposters who lucked into a situation where they could just go along for the ride yet suck up all the credit as if they had really done something. Yes, they were the original Twelfth Man Tomlins.

  15. cd859 says: Dec 13, 2013 11:22 AM

    Love my Bengals, but the CB situation scares me. Dre has to step up and Adam Jones on Brown really scares me. Have to get to Ben to get a win. Hope they can pull it off. Who Dey!!!!

  16. joetoronto says: Dec 13, 2013 12:02 PM

    If the red popgun and the Bungals lose this game, they’ll never win a big game as long as the red sausage is there.

  17. pooflingingmonkey says: Dec 13, 2013 1:23 PM

    @joetoronto says:Dec 13, 2013 12:02 PM

    “If the red popgun and the Bungals lose this game,…”

    The Bengals would like to, once agan, thank the Raiders for Dre Kirkpatrick and Gio Bernard. How’s Palmer doing for your… oh, wait. He’s a Cardinal now. Well, at least Hue Jackson… oh, he’s Gio’s RB coach now? What did the Raiders get for that trade? Nothing. Zip. Nada. Only the Raiders would trade a 1st and a 2nd for a one year rental of a washed up QB.

    I’ve never seen anyone jealous of the Bengals before? Apparently folks consider them a threat now?

  18. thegenoatkinsdiet says: Dec 13, 2013 1:41 PM

    Vegas clearly knows something that certain Bengals trolls have yet to admit to themselves…

  19. surfinbird1 says: Dec 13, 2013 1:54 PM

    Favored. I think you just jinxed them.

  20. bengalsfan27 says: Dec 13, 2013 2:01 PM

    I think dre is gonna cover Brown.. An for you Steelers fans saying Concy is gonna lose your all idiots.. I’m not saying we’re gonna smoke em but were gonna beat em and continue our strangle hold on the devision. Sorry the Crown of the AFC goes to Cincy!.

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