Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 11/12/12
Cincinnati at Kansas City Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City - TV: CBS; DirecTV: 710 *TV announcers: Marv Albert, Rich Gannon *Keys to the game: Andy Dalton didn't play safe in his four-touchdown effort Week 10 against the Giants, which is exactly what offensive coordinator Jay Gruden wants to see for Cincinnati to dig out of its 3-5 start. The Chiefs will be ready for the Bengals to pass on first down. It set up short second down distances regularly against the Giants. When teams sit on the high-percentage underneath passes, Dalton has opened it up with TE Jermaine Gresham and WR A.J. Green, who has nine catches for 20-plus yards on the season and has a touchdown catch in eight straight games. The Chiefs aren't deep at cornerback, a rotation that is still being worked out since Stanford Routt was cut. The Chiefs scored 32 points in the month of October, so if they can't stay close into the third quarter, the Bengals could cruise. The formula that worked to start the season -- running Jamaal Charles with the occasional strike to WR Dwayne Bowe -- has been punted. Dogged by injuries to Charles, a short-lived quarterback switch and a team-wide turnover plague, Kansas City is desperate but likely needs to rely on defense and special teams to give them ideal field position to stand a realistic chance. *Matchup to watch - Bengals MLB Rey Maualuga vs. Charles: Discipline isn't Maualuga's strong suit and if he's caught overrunning plays or taking the wrong angle, Charles' explosiveness will be on full display. The Bengals would like to see more "impact" plays from Maualuga, who hasn't been involved in a sack or takeaway since a Week 16 interception last season. *Player spotlight - Chiefs CB Javier Arenas: A talented returner but relative newbie to the defensive starting lineup since replacing Routt, the coaching staff likes Arenas for his swagger and big-play flair. The Bengals are certain to test him. *Fast facts: The Bengals haven't had back-to-back winning seasons in 30 years. ... The Chiefs have scored more than 23 points at home just once since Dec. 26, 2010. WHO WILL WIN AND WHY The Bengals played like a team in playoff mode and manhandled the Giants last week. With a run of losing teams ahead on the schedule, the stage is set for QB Andy Dalton and Cincinnati to mount a comeback in the AFC North. *Our pick: Bengals 23-13
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