Friday, August 5, 2022

NFL 2022 Season Preview - CINCINNATI BENGALS

CINCINNATI BENGALS                                                                       

2021 Record - 10-7-0


Head Coach - Zac Taylor 


New Additions - Hayden Hurst (TE), Alex Cappa (OL), Ted Karras (OL), La'el Collins (OL)

Offensive Rank in 2021 - 7th (361 YPG); Scoring - 17th (27.1 PPG)

Defensive Rank in 2021 - 18th (351 YPG); Scoring - 17th (22.1 PPG)

Joe Burrow is back for his third season at quarterback and he passed for 4,611 yards with 34 touchdowns and 14 interceptions last year. Joe Mixon (1,205 rushing yards, 4.1 YPC average, 13 touchdowns and 42 receptions for 314 yards, three TD) is the top running back and the trio of Ja'Marr Chase (81 receptions, 1,455 yards and 13 TD), Tee Higgins (74, 1,091, six TD) and Tyler Boyd (67, 828, five TD) are at wide receiver once again. The tight ends are Hayden Hurst and Drew Sample

Defensively, Trey Hendrickson (14 QB sacks) and Sam Hubbard (7 1/2 sacks) are the rush ends and Logan Wilson (four interceptions) headlines the linebacking unit. The secondary features corners Eli Apple (two INT) and Chidobe Awuzie (two picks) along with safeties Vonn Bell, Jessie Bates and Brandon Wilson. Cornerback Mike Hilton (two INT) and rookies Dax Hill (safety from Michigan) and Cam Taylor-Britt (CB from Nebraska) will be in the fold as well. 


Outlook for 2022 season - The Bengals had a magic carpet ride all the way to the Super Bowl last season and whether they can repeat that effort will depend on Burrow and the offense making it happen. Head Coach Zac Taylor knows this team can score points with a good mix on offense and Burrow having the knack for making big plays in the clutch. 

The defense was a concern at times last year, but did get a good amount of turnovers in the playoffs that allowed them to almost win it all. The Bengals registered 42 sacks and had 13 interceptions and drafted two defensive backs in the off season. The team also brought in numerous free agent offensive lineman to help improve the protection for Burrow, who was sacked way too much a year ago. 

As long as key players on both sides of the football stay healthy and the team keeps it balanced on offense while giving Burrow time to do his thing, there is no reason to doubt the Bengals winning the AFC North division title again. Baltimore is the biggest threat, but Cincy throttled them twice last season. A return trip to the Super Bowl is possible, but a lot has to go just right in 2022 for that to happen.



Week One - vs. Pittsburgh 

Week Two - at Dallas 

Week Three - at N.Y. Jets 

Week Four - vs. Miami

Week Five - at Baltimore 

Week Six - at New Orleans 

Week Seven - vs. Atlanta 

Week Eight - at Cleveland 

Week Nine - vs. Carolina 

Week Ten - BYE 

Week Eleven - at Pittsburgh 

Week Twelve - at Tennessee 

Week Thirteen - vs. Kansas City 

Week Fourteen - vs. Cleveland 

Week Fifteen - at Tampa Bay 

Week Sixteen - at New England 

Week Seventeen - vs. Buffalo 

Week Eighteen - vs. Baltimore

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