Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals won their final eight games of the regular season to finish 12-4 and won the AFC North for the second consecutive season.

cincinnati bengals

The Cincinnati Bengals: A Journey of Resilience and Triumph

The National Football League (NFL) is a league that has seen its fair share of ups and downs, and the Cincinnati Bengals are no exception to this narrative. Founded in 1967, the franchise has undergone a tumultuous journey filled with challenges, triumphs, and moments of despair. From their humble beginnings to their recent resurgence, the Bengals have carved out a unique identity in the world of professional football. In this article, we will delve into the rich history of the Cincinnati Bengals, exploring their evolution as a team, iconic moments, and the path that has led them to their current status in the NFL.

A Humble Beginning

The Cincinnati Bengals were born in 1967 when Paul Brown, a legendary figure in the world of football, was awarded an expansion franchise in the AFL-NFL merger. Brown had previously founded and coached the Cleveland Browns, a team that bore his name and became one of the most successful franchises in the early years of the NFL. His vision for the Bengals was to create a team that would embody his principles of discipline, teamwork, and excellence.

The team’s first season in 1968 was marked by struggles, as they finished with a record of 3-11. However, it was in these early years that the foundation for the Bengals’ future success was laid. One of the most pivotal moments in the team’s history came in 1981 when they drafted a young quarterback named Ken Anderson. Under Anderson’s leadership, the Bengals would embark on a journey that would forever change the course of the franchise.

The Ken Anderson Era

Ken Anderson’s impact on the Cincinnati Bengals cannot be overstated. He was not only an exceptional quarterback but also a true leader on and off the field. Anderson’s precision passing and football IQ made him one of the most respected quarterbacks in the league. In 1981, he led the Bengals to their first-ever Super Bowl appearance.

Super Bowl XVI pitted the Bengals against the San Francisco 49ers in a clash of two talented teams. Although the Bengals fell short, losing 26-21, the experience of reaching the Super Bowl was a defining moment for the franchise. It signaled to fans and players alike that the Bengals were a team to be reckoned with, and their best days were still ahead.

The Super Bowl loss in 1981 was a tough pill to swallow, but it served as motivation for the Bengals to continue their pursuit of greatness. Under Anderson’s guidance, the team would make the playoffs several times throughout the 1980s, further solidifying their reputation as a competitive and resilient franchise.

The Ickey Shuffle and the 1988 Super Bowl Run

One of the most iconic moments in Bengals history came during the 1988 season when rookie running back Ickey Woods introduced the world to the “Ickey Shuffle.” Woods’ end-zone dance became a sensation and captured the hearts of fans across the nation. The Bengals rode the wave of excitement generated by the “Ickey Shuffle” all the way to Super Bowl XXIII.

Super Bowl XXIII, played in 1989, was a rematch of sorts between the Bengals and the San Francisco 49ers. Once again, the Bengals came up just short, losing 20-16 in a hard-fought battle. While the disappointment of another Super Bowl loss stung, it was clear that the Bengals were a force to be reckoned with in the NFL.

A New Millennium: The Marvin Lewis Era

As the 1990s gave way to the new millennium, the Cincinnati Bengals found themselves in a period of transition. The team underwent coaching changes and struggled to find consistent success on the field. However, in 2003, the Bengals made a significant hire that would alter the course of the franchise’s history.

Marvin Lewis, a respected defensive coordinator with a wealth of NFL experience, was named the head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals. Under Lewis’ leadership, the team began to rebuild, focusing on player development and creating a culture of accountability. One of the key pieces of this revitalization was the drafting of quarterback Carson Palmer in 2003.

Palmer, along with standout wide receiver Chad Johnson (formerly Chad Ochocinco), formed a dynamic duo that brought excitement back to Cincinnati. The Bengals made the playoffs in 2005, ending a 15-year postseason drought. Although they were eliminated in the first round, the return to the playoffs signaled a new era of competitiveness for the franchise.

The Andy Dalton and A.J. Green Era

The 2010s marked another era of promise for the Bengals, with quarterback Andy Dalton and wide receiver A.J. Green leading the way. The duo quickly established themselves as one of the most potent quarterback-receiver combinations in the league. Under the guidance of head coach Marvin Lewis, the Bengals made the playoffs five consecutive years from 2011 to 2015, a remarkable feat for the franchise.

While the Bengals faced some early playoff exits during this period, their consistent presence in the postseason was a testament to the team’s resilience and competitiveness. The “Red Rifle” (Dalton) and “A.J. Green” chants became synonymous with the fervor and passion of Bengals fans.

However, despite their regular-season success, the Bengals faced criticism for their inability to win playoff games. The pressure to break through and win a postseason game mounted, and the 2015 season offered the Bengals a prime opportunity.

The “Andy Dalton Curse” and the 2015 Heartbreak

The 2015 season was a rollercoaster ride for the Cincinnati Bengals. Led by Dalton and Green, the team started the season strong, and optimism soared among fans. However, a late-season thumb injury to Dalton raised concerns. He would miss the rest of the regular season and was unable to play in the team’s playoff opener.

The Bengals hosted the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Wild Card round of the playoffs, and the game would go down in history as one of the most dramatic and heartbreaking moments for Bengals fans. With less than two minutes left in the game, the Bengals held a lead and seemed poised to secure their first playoff win in decades.

However, a fumble and subsequent penalties in the closing moments allowed the Steelers to kick the game-winning field goal, snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. The “Andy Dalton Curse” narrative emerged, with critics questioning whether the Bengals could ever win a playoff game with Dalton at the helm.

A New Hope: Joe Burrow and the Rebirth of the Bengals

Amid the disappointment of the 2015 season, the Bengals faced a period of rebuilding. Marvin Lewis stepped down as head coach after the 2018 season, and the team embarked on a search for a new leader. In 2019, the Bengals selected Joe Burrow, a highly touted quarterback from LSU, with the first overall pick in the NFL Draft.

Burrow’s arrival brought renewed hope and excitement to Cincinnati. His poise, leadership, and football IQ quickly endeared him to fans and teammates alike. The Bengals also made a crucial coaching hire, bringing in Zac Taylor as the head coach to lead the team’s resurgence.

The 2020 season was a challenging one, as Burrow endured the typical trials and tribulations of a rookie quarterback. However, he showed immense promise and delivered several standout performances, raising expectations for the future. Unfortunately, Burrow suffered a season-ending knee injury late in the season, leaving fans anxious about his recovery and the team’s prospects.

The Turning Point: Super Bowl LVI

The 2021 season was a turning point for the Cincinnati Bengals. Joe Burrow made a remarkable recovery from his injury and returned to lead the team with renewed determination. The Bengals finished the regular season with a record of 10-7, earning a playoff berth for the first time since 2015.

In the playoffs, the Bengals showcased their resilience and talent, with Burrow and his favorite target, Ja’Marr Chase, forming a dynamic partnership. They defeated the Las Vegas Raiders, Tennessee Titans, and Kansas City Chiefs to reach Super Bowl LVI, where they faced the Los Angeles Rams.

Super Bowl LVI was a thrilling matchup that captured the hearts of football fans across the nation. The Bengals fought valiantly, but in the end, they fell just short, losing to the Rams by a score of 23-20. While the loss stung, it marked a significant achievement for the franchise, as they had returned to the Super Bowl after a 33-year absence.

The Future of the Cincinnati Bengals

As the Cincinnati Bengals look to the future, there is a sense of optimism and excitement among fans and players alike. Joe Burrow, with his talent and leadership, has the potential to lead the team to even greater heights. The Bengals have a talented roster and a strong coaching staff, setting the stage for continued success in the years to come.

The journey of the Cincinnati Bengals has been one of resilience, determination, and unwavering support from their passionate fan base. From their early struggles to their Super Bowl appearances, the Bengals have left an indelible mark on the NFL landscape. Their story is one of triumph over adversity, and it serves as a testament to the enduring spirit of the franchise and its commitment to excellence.


The Cincinnati Bengals’ journey in the NFL is a tale of highs and lows, heartbreak and triumph. From their humble beginnings in 1968 to their recent resurgence and Super Bowl appearance in 2021, the Bengals have shown resilience in the face of adversity. Through iconic moments, legendary players, and passionate fans, the franchise has carved out a unique identity in the world of professional football.

As they look to the future, the Cincinnati Bengals are poised for continued success. With Joe Burrow leading the way and a dedicated fan base cheering them on, the Bengals have the potential to achieve greatness and add to their storied history. The journey continues, and the future is bright for this iconic NFL franchise.

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Cincinnati Bengals Schedule

Pre Season

Week Date Opponent Result
Week 1 Date: Fri 11/08/2023 Opponent: Green Bay Packers Result: L 19-36
Week 2 Date: Fri 18/08/2023 Opponent: Atlanta Falcons Result: T 13-13
Week 3 Date: Sat 26/08/2023 Opponent: Washington Commanders Result: L 19-21

Regular Season

Week Date Opponent Result
Week 1 Date: Sun 10/09/2023 Opponent: Cleveland Browns Result: L 3-24
Week 2 Date: Sun 17/09/2023 Opponent: Baltimore Ravens Result: L 24-27
Week 3 Date: Mon 25/09/2023 Opponent: L.A. Rams Result: W 19-16
Week 4 Date: Sun 01/10/2023 Opponent: Tennessee Titans Result: L 3-27
Week 5 Date: Sun 08/10/2023 Opponent: Arizona Cardinals Result: W 34-20
Week 6 Date: Sun 15/10/2023 Opponent: Seattle Seahawks Result: W 17-13
Week 7 Date: BYE Opponent: BYE Result: BYE
Week 8 Date: Sun 29/10/2023 Opponent: San Francisco 49ers Result: W 31-17
Week 9 Date: Sun 05/11/2023 Opponent: Buffalo Bills Result: W 24-18
Week 10 Date: Sun 12/11/2023 Opponent: Houston Texans Result: L 27-30
Week 11 Date: Thu 16/11/2023 Opponent: Baltimore Ravens Result: L 20-34
Week 12 Date: Sun 26/11/2023 Opponent: Pittsburgh Steelers Result: L 10-16
Week 13 Date: Mon 04/12/2023 Opponent: Jacksonville Jaguars Result: W 34-31
Week 14 Date: Sun 10/12/2023 Opponent: Indianapolis Colts Result: W 34-14
Week 15 Date: Sat 16/12/2023 Opponent: Minnesota Vikings Result: W 27-24
Week 16 Date: Sat 23/12/2023 Opponent: Pittsburgh Steelers Result: L 11-34
Week 17 Date: Sun 31/12/2023 Opponent: Kansas City Chiefs Result: L 17-25
Week 18 Date: Sun 07/01/2024 Opponent: Cleveland Browns Result: W 31-14

Cincinnati Bengals [year] Odds

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AFC Conference


Odds to Win


Seasons Win

11 +100 Over
11 -120 Under