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The jitters and excitement of getting back on the football field for Week 1 of the NFL preseason should be a bit better going into the second game. Now, it’s down to business, with team trying to solidify their game plans, schemes, and rosters.
Kicking things off in Week 2 of the preseason are the Atlanta Falcons and the Cincinnati Bengals in the Georgia Dome.
The Falcons dropped 31-17 in their first preseason game last Thursday against the Baltimore Ravens. But the first team for Atlanta looked solid, especially receiver Julio Jones. Jones had a solid rookie season in 2011, but now really looks to take his performance to a next level to try to become one of the best receivers in the NFL. It will certainly help to have an All-Pro receiver on the other side in Roddy White. And now with a full season and offseason together, these two receivers could very well form the top duo in the league.
Cincinnati came out on top 17-6 in their preseason opener against the New York Jets. and while it is the preseason, it’s still nice to get a victory.
The Bengals were arguably the surprise of the NFL in 2011, behind rookie quarterback Andy Dalton. Dalton had a much better than expected first season, leading the Bengals to a berth in the playoffs. Dalton has a dynamic weapon as well on the outside in fellow second-year player A.J Green. Green was the top receiver taken in 2011, and certainly proved why.
Looking ahead at this game, we expect to see more of the same as we did in the first week. Starters for both sides should play a few series or a quarter, before the second and third strings come on to the field.
Oddsmakers have formed a betting line for this match up. Falcons vs Bengals Week 2 preseason betting odds available at Bovada Sportsbook have set the Falcons as 3.5-point favorites. To cover, Atlanta will need to win by at least four points. With a loss by a field goal or less, the victory against the spread goes to Cincinnati.
The Falcons and Bengals kick off at 8 pm ET on Thursday, with coverage on FOX.