[2017 NFL Preview] Cincinnati Bengals

Another day. Another NFL preview.

Up today? Those crazy cats in Cincinnati who are still looking to win their first playoff game since The Simpsons were considered a new and upcoming show.

It’s going to happen at some point.

Why not this season, right?

LET’S PREVIEW THE CINCINNATI BENGALS!!!!

 

 

2017 NFL Preview

 

 

 

 

Record Last Five Seasons: 10-6 (2012), 11-5 (2013), 10-5-1 (2014), 12-4 (2015), 6-9-1 (2016)

Last Playoff Win: 1990 Wild Card vs. Houston Oilers

Last Playoff Appearance: 2015 Wild Card vs. Pittsburgh

Super Bowl Wins: None

Last Super Bowl Appearance: Super Bowl XXIII vs. San Francisco

 

The Head Coach:

Marvin Lewis

Coaching Record: 118-103-3

Playoff Record: 0-7

Grade: C-

 

2016-17 Team Leaders:

Passing Yards/Touchdowns: Andy Dalton (4,206), Andy Dalton (18)

Rushing Yards/Touchdowns: Jeremy Hill (839), Jeremy Hill (9)

Receiving Yards/Touchdowns: A.J. Green (964), Brandon LaFell (6)

Tackles: Karlos Dansby (114)

Interceptions: Shawn Williams/George Iloka/Dre Kirkpatrick (3)

 

2017 Projected Starters:

Grade Key:

  • ELITE
  • GREAT
  • GOOD
  • NOT GOOD
  • ROOKIE
  • HORRIBLE

Offense:

QB: Andy Dalton

RB: Joe Mixon

FB: Ryan Hewitt

WR: A.J. Green

WR: Brandon LaFell

TE: Tyler Eifert

LT: Cedric Ogbuehi

RT: Jake Fisher

RG: Andre Smith

LG: Clint Boling

OC: Russell Bodine

Defense:

DE: Carlos Dunlap

DE: Michael Johnson

DT: Geno Atkins

DT: Andrew Billings

LB: Kevin Minter

LB: Vontaze Burfict

LB: Nick Vigil

CB: Adam Jones

CB: Dre Kirkpatrick

FS: George Iloka

SS: Shawn Williams

 

The Schedule:

vs. Baltimore Ravens (September 10)

vs. Houston Texans (September 14)

vs. @ Green Bay Packers (September 24)

vs. @ Cleveland Browns (October 1)

vs. Buffalo Bills (October 8)

BYE WEEK

vs. @ Pittsburgh Steelers (October 22)

vs. Indianapolis Colts (October 29)

vs. @ Jacksonville Jaguars (November 5)

vs. @ Tennessee Titans (November 12)

vs. @ Denver Broncos (November 19)

vs. Cleveland Browns (November 26)

vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (December 4)

vs. Chicago Bears (December 10)

vs. @ Minnesota Vikings (December 17)

vs. Detroit Lions (December 24)

vs. @ Baltimore Ravens (December 31)

 

Three Things I Like About The Bengals This Season:

-The Schedule: One of the benefits of finishing with a bad record in the NFL is the following year the schedule is usually a little easier. That’s the case for the Bengals. Looking at their schedule, there’s a real good chance that Cincinnati is 4-1 heading into their bye week with a lot of momentum and confidence. Momentum and confidence are very underrated things in the NFL. If the Bengals manage to make a return to the playoffs this season, the schedule will be a big reason why.

-Andy Dalton’s Weapons: Andy Dalton isn’t a great NFL QB by any means. The guy is a good QB though and he can get you to the playoffs. One of the reasons why he’s a good QB is the weapons that the Bengals surround him with. A.J. Green is back and fully healthy. That’s a huge bonus for the Bengals. They drafted John Ross and Joe Mixon early in the NFL Draft and I expect those guys to be factors this season, especially Mixon (love him or hate him, the kid looks like a good NFL RB). Jeremy Hill and Gio Bernard are also still around and if that wasn’t enough….the Bengals also have Tyler Eifert at tight end. Andy Dalton definitely isn’t lacking weapons on the offensive side of the ball.

-Good Health: Like I just mentioned, A.J. Green is back and healthy and that provides a significant boost to Cincinnati’s offense. What also brings a significant boost to the offense is a healthy Tyler Eifert as well. Eifert is one of the best tight ends in the NFL and he had an overall disappointing year last year due to injuries. With these players back in the lineup full-time, the Bengals will see their playoff chances increase significantly. That shouldn’t come as a shocker to anyone.

 

Three Things I Hate About The Bengals This Season:

-Marvin Lewis: The Bengals really should have given up on Marvin Lewis like 5 years ago, but for some reason they keep waiting for him to figure out how to win playoff games and it’s just not happening. I appreciate Cincinnati’s desire to keep stability within the organization, but there comes a point when a change needs to be made. Like I said, that was 5 years ago.

-The Offensive Line: A few years ago the Cincinnati Bengals arguably had one of the best offensive line units in the NFL. Well, those times are gone. Andrew Whitworth left in free agency and now the Bengals have massive holes at offensive tackle. Not only that, but Andre Smith is garbage and the other two starters are good, but not great. I think the Bengals will be a good football team this year, but if they aren’t….these might be the guys you want to put the blame on. Losing Whitworth is going to hurt more than Bengals fans imagine.

-The Drought: You knew it was going to come up eventually. Everyone knows the Bengals haven’t won a playoff game since 1990 because they are obviously cursed. Well, I’m a big believer in sports curses and I don’t know which one of the sports gods the Bengals pissed off, but they had better do some damage control ASAP. It’s high time for the Bengals to start making some noise in the post-season. Enough is enough and it’s time for a change.

 

The Prediction:

10-6

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