The Cincinnati Bengals are looking to improve on a (4-12) 2018 season. A season where the Bengals defense was hard to watch, ranking last in yards allowed. The defense also did not make many transactions to improve this, and let veteran LB Vontaze Burfict go. The offense also struggled as it ranked 26th in total yards produced on offense and produced more questions than answers. Will Andy Dalton improve his accuracy and turnover rate? Will AJ Green be able to stay healthy? Those are all questions this offense must answer. This is why new Head Coach Zac Taylor was brought on board, to try to make Andy Dalton the next Jared Goff. These questions will start to be answered in week 1 as the Bengals to play the Seattle Seahawks.
Week 1 at Seattle Seahawks
This will be a tough week one matchup for the Cincinnati Bengals as they travel to play the Seahawks and the “12th man.” The worst ranked offense in 2018 will have a rude awakening as newly extended QB Russell Wilson proves why he is the top ranked QB in the league. Seahawks shred the Bengals.
Week 2 vs San Francisco 49ers
The Bengals home opener will be against the second worst team in 2018. Although Jimmy Garoppolo will be back under center after an ACL injury derailed his 2018 season, he will still be fresh and trying to figure things out. I think this will cause issues as the Bengals defense does just enough to hang in this one for a close win.
Week 3 at Buffalo Bills
Anytime you travel up north to play the Bills, the Bills mafia will be waiting in full force. The 2nd ranked yards allowed defense in 2018 shows up and stops the Bengals offense from getting anything generated. Josh Allen will feature Shady McCoy down the stretch and win a close one.
Week 4 at Pittsburgh Steelers
The Steelers swept this series in 2018 and although Antonio Brown is gone Big Ben is still at the helm. Big Ben will be able to find James Connor and JuJu Smith-Shuster in space for a win at Heinz field.
Week 5 vs Arizona Cardinals
The worst team in the league in 2018 will bring a new look offense to the Queen City. Coach Kingsbury and newly drafted QB Kyler Murray should be able to put together a couple of scoring drives, but AJ Green and Joe Mixon prove too much for the defense to handle.
Week 6 at Baltimore Ravens
The lack luster offense of the Bengals will have to face off against the top ranked yards allowed defense in 2018. The Ravens will stymy this offense and shut AJ Green down. Lamar Jackson and company will have a field day on this league worst defense. Ravens win in a route.
Week 7 vs Jacksonville Jaguars
Although the Jaguars will be without there captain and leading tackler Telvin Smith due to personal reasons, they added a dynamic playmaker in Josh Allen that should be able to carry some of the load. Also Nick Foles is a major upgrade from Blake Bortles as he is able to pick a part this Bengals defense.
Week 8 at Los Angeles Rams
Some may think that the Bengals will have an advantage as new Head Coach Zac Taylor knows ins and outs of the Rams’ offense but there is one problem, talent. The Rams are just the more talented team and will win with ease.
Week 9 Bye
Week 10 vs Baltimore Ravens
I see this as a repeat of the week 6 matchup as the Ravens sweep the season series.
Week 11 at Oakland Raiders
Even though this game is at the black hole, I have very low expectations for the Raiders in their second year under Coach Jon Gruden. I have no confidence in QB Derek Carr’s ability and see him making multiple key mistakes against a lack luster Bengals defense.
Week 12 vs Pittsburgh Steelers
Pittsburgh completes the season sweep in this one, with Big Ben torching the defense.
Week 13 vs New York Jets
I see the Bengals defense not improving over the year and the familiarity Leveon Bell has with the Bengals paying off. Sam Darnold is able to find the versatile back in space and abuse the Bengals subpar defense.
Week 14 at Cleveland Browns
Baker Mayfield was wonderful as a rookie and with the addition of Odell Beckham Jr to pair with Jarvis Landry; the Browns offense will be hard to stop. With the Browns improving and coming off of a sweep of the Bengals in 2018, I can’t go against the Browns.
Week 15 vs New England Patriots
The Patriots are just more talented and better coached on both sides of the ball. Pats win.
Week 16 at Miami Dolphins
At this point in the season both of these teams will be vying for draft positioning for the upcoming season. Ryan Findley is behind center for the Bengals in this one and he makes a couple key mistakes down the stretch in a tough loss on the road.
Week 17 vs Cleveland Browns
I see this as a repeat of week 14 and the more talented Cleveland Browns on the road.
This line is high to me as the Bengals did barely anything to improve over the offseason and they play a really tough schedule. Take the under in a down year for the Bengals.