After a long wait, football fans were blessed with the first NFL Sunday of the season. While some teams flourished and showed promise, other teams wasted no time driving their fans insane. Being that it was only week one, there’s obvious time for improvement for teams that struggled on Sunday. However, no team disappointed their fans more than the Cincinnati Bengals.
Joe Burrow has a bad day, throwing four interceptions, the worst of his career.
Cincinnati Bengals Week One Breakdown
The Cincinnati Bengals, last year’s loser in the Super Bowl, had high expectations coming into the season. While returning all of their offensive weapons, and bolstering up their offensive line, Bengals fans were hopeful for another playoff season. On Sunday, the Bengals played a division game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. As a seven-point home favorite, Bengals fans assumed they had a division win all but secured to start the season. Unfortunately for them, that was not the case as the Bengals lost to the Steelers in overtime 20-23.
Two main factors contributed to the Bengals loss, turnovers, and an injury to star wideout Tee Higgins. Joe Burrow had an atrocious game, throwing four interceptions and fumbling twice, losing one. To go along with the turnovers, the Bengals lost Tee Higgins late in the first quarter due to a concussion.
Bengals fans have no reason to be concerned after a lackluster week one performance.
Why Fans Have No Reason to Fret
On Sunday, the AFC North matchup was one of the most competitive games NFL fans saw. After the loss, Bengals fans were left asking themselves if last year’s success was just a fluke. I can assure all you Bengals fans, there is no need to panic over this loss. In a game where a starting quarterback turns the ball over five times, you would assume that team had lost by multiple scores. Instead, this Bengals team kept the game close to the final seconds in overtime against a fully capable Steelers team. The defense of the Bengals kept the Steelers offense to thirteen points in 110 minutes of football, an extremely impressive feat. While the turnovers are inexcusable, that was statistically Joe Burrows worst game in his career. The Bengals should’ve lost this game easily, but Burrows resilience and stout play by the defense kept the game manageable.
Another reason of concern for Bengals fans was the injury sustained by Tee Higgins. Being the number two receiver in this offense, Higgins has a big impact during games. With Higgins ruled out, the Steelers secondary could primarily focus on Jamaar Chase, Burrow’s favorite target. Thankfully for Bengals fans, Higgins only sustained a concussion. Possessing no extensive history of concussions, Tee should have a shot at playing next week, assuming he passes the protocol test. With Higgins’s injury not threatening multiple week absence, the Bengals offense should remain deadly as ever.
Every year in the NFL, we see great teams get off to rocky starts. As fans, you learn to take the small victories when things don’t go as hoped. The Bengals still possess the second-best odds of winning the division even after their week one blunder. With an entire season left to play, Cincinnati should have no trouble gathering their bearings. Behind offensive mastermind Zac Taylor, and an extremely talented offense led by Joe Burrow, Bengals fans are in great hands for the remainder of the season.
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