Four Expert Predictions for the Cincinnati Bengals in 2017
Having finished 3rd in the AFC North for 2016, things are definitely looking up, and the Cincinnati Bengals have a chance to do some serious damage, despite popular opinion from years past. Like every team, they’re facing some serious disadvantages that they’re going to have to overcome, but it’s nothing that they can’t work around with some determination and most importantly, teamwork. Let’s start with the fact that they still have A.J. Green who is still somewhat recovering from that hamstring incident following a loss to the Buffalo Bills in 2016. Despite that, they’ve lost several important players along their offensive line including Andrew Whitworth and Kevin Zeitler. Whitworth joined the Los Angeles Rams, and Zeitler defected to the Bengal’s northern neighbor, the Browns. If you’ve been following the NFL world to any extent then you know that Andres Mith and Kevin Minter have been brought in, but there is some concern as to whether or not they’re going to live up to the potential loss of Green. Probably not. What we do know, is that the draft is coming up, and there are some pretty good options this year.
So, here’s the one thing we can’t predict: Will Green actually remain healthy for all 16 games? It’s hard to say, but we know that without him, things could go south pretty quickly.
As for their offensive line, there is a good chance that Jake Fisher will be starting as offensive tackle, and he has a good resume to back him up. Overall, the prediction is that the Cincinnati Bengals will finish 6–9–1 just like they did in 2016, but there is always that opportunity for it to become even worse. Hopefully they’ll surprise us.
Muddy Predictions for the Final Month from WKRC
According to Richard Skinner of WKRC, the only clear cut game is going to be the second one of the final month, which is an at–home game against Chicago. This, however, can be interpreted in any number of ways, because the game before that is a Monday–night home game against the Steelers. Still, if they managed to go 3–2 during that month it would be better than nothing, and we might even consider it a success.
Finishing third in the AFC isn’t exactly small beans, but breaking out of that rut is going to require some serious determination. Things aren’t going to get any easier this season, according to Katherine Terrell, Bengals Sports Writer. Fortunately, the core of the team is strong and the early schedule seems to be fairly favorable. We will definitely be seeing some improvement.
Week 3 = Cincinnati Bengals Toughest Game
There are quite a few games scheduled, but it’s believed that the toughest game is going to be during Week 3 against the Green Bay Packers. So, here’s the question: do they stand a chance? Probably not, and even if they do win, it’ll probably be a pretty even match. Chances are they won’t walk away from it without a scratch.
All or Nothing: Denver Broncos Week 11
Let’s say for a moment that the Bengals want to make a point, that point being that they actually mean to come out on top this season and maybe even make a bid for the Super Bowl, they’re going to need to beat the Denver Broncos. In a way, this would be a bit of a revenge game as Trevor Siemian threw four touchdowns against the Bengals in 2016. Yeah, it would be nice to actually get some payback for that, wouldn’t it?
Now, with all of that being said, a victory against Denver is kind of a tall order. Still, it will show us what we should expect from them for the rest of the season. If you want to take it a bit further, then you might look for the at home game against the Detroit Lions, which could be yet another ‘make it or break it’ moment.
There are many factors that need to be taken into account, without a doubt, and the departures of both Andew Whitworth and Kevin Zeitler are going to pose some problems. Sure, they have Andrew Smith, but he had his own struggles last year, so the Bengals are going to need to reach further if they’re going to turn that into a real positive. There’s no telling exactly where the Bengals are going this year, but we can be assured that it will be a pretty interesting season. Will they come out on top? Most importantly, will they be blazing the trail toward the Super Bowl? Time will tell, but right now, the Cincinnati Bengals have a lot to prove to the world, especially if they want to make up for what happened last season.