Found December 27, 2012 on
The Bengals are locked in to the 6th seed of the playoffs no matter whether they win or lose against the Ravens. So it is natural to wonder whether Marvin might choose to sit rest some of his normal starters in the season finale. Of course, Marvin was asked about it. He gave what I say is the right answer: No. It’s not the right answer because the front office is still hoping to sell out the game. It’s right because getting that 10th win this season is huge for this organization.
Improve on last year’s record. After starting out the 2011 season at 6-2, the team limped its way to a 9-7 finish. Even though this year’s competition was a little better, repeating a 9-7 record is less than ideal. Getting to double-digit wins would show that the foundation of this team is rock solid.
Beat a playoff team. So far, they are 0-2 against the Ravens and Broncos. The Redskins are the only contender they have beaten so far, and if the ‘Skins lose to Dallas this week, they will be 0-3 against playoff teams. Losing to the Ravens will resurrect all of last year’s talk about how the Bengals can’t beat good teams.
Beat a division rival. Beating the Steelers on their home turf to knock them out of the playoffs was a satisfying win. That was the kind of game that the Bengals have been all too prone over the years to finding some mind-numbingly frustrating way to lose. The Steelers just seem to normally have the Bengals’ number in games like that. But let’s face it, the Steelers just weren’t that good this year. They were like Scut Farkus in A Christmas Story… all intimidation and no punch at gut-check time.
The Ravens are also stumbling toward the end of the season, and now is the perfect time to punch them hard and bloody their nose as well. Put the division on notice that the Bengals are for real. Beating the two teams that have harassed them most in back-to-back weeks sends that message. Style points mean nothing in a bare-knuckles division like the AFC North, but wins do.
Build momentum into the playoffs. Over the past few years, the football gods seem to have revoked the advantage of the bye week and even of home-field advantage. The 6th seed has not been a mere consolation prize recently, either. The Bengals will face a challenging road through the playoffs no matter what. Ending the season by beating a playoff-bound division foe would be a nice boost of confidence that this team can keep pace with quality opponents. And since sitting good players to end the season has been the quickest way out of the playoffs lately, let’s not tempt fate.
Energize the fan base. Bengals fans have been dying for a team that will reward their loyalty with wins. But they have been burned too many times to have blind faith any more. They need proof that they won’t be disappointed once again. Once they have it, watch out! A win over the Ravens this week would show fans that good times aren’t just coming, but they are here. Watch season ticket sales for 2013 pick up with a win this week… or stay flat with a loss.
So when you read again and again this week that the game against the Ravens is “meaningless,” give a hearty laugh, shake your head or simply make fun of the author. We know very well that any game against the Ravens is important, but the one this week is especially so.
BEST OF MAXIM
The 2012 NFL season has been full of upsets, questionable wins and basically things that don’t make any sense.
At the beginning of the season, odds were Andy Dalton, A.J. Green and the Cincinnati Bengals weren’t going to take over the Steelers in the AFC North, but they did just that by knocking them out of the playoffs. A bit of payback for all those years the Bengals have...
The hiring of Marvin Lewis marked the end of the Lost Decade. In the wake of an extended period of football futility, most of Lewis’ tenure as head coach has been spent trying to steady a team that has lurched and backfired and stalled like a stick-shift AMC Pacer with a 16-year-old behind the wheel.
In Lewis’ first two seasons, he lifted a team that had gone 55-137 in their...
Geno Atkins gets a lot of attention every time an opponent watches film trying to figure out how to contain the Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle. His first selection as a Pro Bowl starter shows what they think of him.
The undersized lineman is considered one of the NFL's best.
The third-year player was chosen as a Pro Bowl starter on Wednesday, his first such honor. He was...
Josh Brown kicked the Cincinnati Bengals into the postseason, and the team's playoff fortunes could continue to ride on the veteran's right leg with Mike Nugent placed on injured reserve. Nugent has been out since Week 13 with a right calf strain. Brown was signed after the Bengals worked out several veteran kickers after Nugent's injury. Cornerback Chris Lewis, an...
Bengals DT Geno Atkins and WR A.J. Green have been voted to the AFC team for this seasons Pro Bowl game, the NFL announced today. They both were voted in as starters.
The game will be played on Sunday, January 27, televised on NBC beginning at 7 p.m. EST.
Were happy for both guys; its a great honor from fellow players and coaches and the voting fans, said Bengals head coach Marvin...
What did you do on Christmas Eve/early Christmas morning? Wrap presents? Sit by the fireplace looking back on past Christmas memories? Sip a bourbon and enjoy family time? Those all sound like fine holiday evenings.
Then there is former Bengals safety Marvin White. He decided to party at Slim’s Y-Ki-Ki bar in Louisiana. Who knew these places were even open on Christmas Eve?
I watched the NFL Network re-air the Bengals deliver the knock-out blow to the Steelers Wednesday night. The game was just as fun the second time, but far less stressful. During a commercial break, I saw NFLN’s blurb covering the QBs named to the Pro Bowl. (Because, you know, we fans care only about quarterbacks, right?)
Honest to God, this is no joke. Whoever wrote the script...
Last week: 15 (+3)
Net points per drive: 0.44 (7th)
DVOA: 4.4% (13th)
Weighted DVOA: 14.2% (7th)
LT Andrew Whitworth: Did not allow a pressure on 48 pass block snaps
RT Andre Smith: Did not allow a pressure on 48 pass block snaps, run blocked for 1 yard on 1 attempt
WR AJ Green: Caught 10 passes for 116 yards on 18 attempts on 48 pass snaps, 6.0 YAC per catch, 2...
Below is the week 16 offensive line breakdown for the Pittsburgh Steelers loss to the Cincinnati Bengals this past Sunday.
Not a great showing in this game from the group as a whole as they allowed four sacks and several pressures in the game. The run blocking also was not up to standard as they had trouble controlling the interior of the line.
At this time of year, questions always arise about whether teams already qualified for the playoffs with nothing to gain, should rest starters or not. An argument can be made for each side, players become rusty or why risk injury? This week, the Cincinnati Bengals face off against the Baltimore Ravens with theoretically nothing to gain with a win. The Bengals are locked in the playoffs...
Santa was good to me this year. I got a Bengals toaster, a new authentic Dalton jersey and a playoff berth. It feels so good to be here. Playoff bound, a good core group of guys and a team that finally looks to be on the up-and-up. People will talk about this Sunday’s game against the Ravens and why is does or doesn’t matter (everyone knows that it does) but there is...
By Stephen Stone (@SrStoneSports)Cold Hard Football Facts' AFC North SniperThis is the seventeenth weekly preview article I have written this year so I know it’s week 17, but as I sit and write this particular blog post I still can’t grasp the idea that the regular season is ending. It feels like it was only yesterday when I told you the Bengals and Ravens would struggle...
Craig Wolfley worked the sidelines for the Steelers Radio Network and then filed this report on the Steelers' loss to the Cincinnati Bengals for SCI.net.