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Cincinnat Bengals 2017 Outlook

August 07, 2017

The AFC North is expected to be a competitive division for the top three places, with the Cincinnati Bengals expected to finish second or third behind the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Last season was a big disappointed for the Bengals who finished 6-9-1, but Andy Dalton returns under center and hopes are they will once again be very competitive. The defense will once again be their strength.

Poor playoffs showings have overshadowed that Cincinnati was one of the most consistent NFL franchises between 2011 and 2015. The team played in the postseason each of those five seasons and won 10 games or more four times.

Quality veterans once again left the team via free agency during the offseason which has pressured the draft selections to produce the last two seasons.

Offensively, the Bengals will be built around quarterback Dalton and his favorite target wide receiver A.J. Green, but how well the team does will be determined by how much protection the offensive line gives Dalton and if it can help to give the Bengals a strong running game.

Cincinnati’s defense is very deep, talented and amongst the best in the NFL.

Besides Dalton and Green, the Bengals added John Ross at wide receiver in the draft to give them more talent at their skill positions. Joe Mixon the controversial but talented rusher will help jumpstart the rushing attack, while Tyler Boyd and Gio Bernard will return in the slot.

Tight end Tyler Eifert is expected to return healthy, which will help Dalton. However, if the offensive line does not hold up its end of the bargain, the deep talent in skill positions will not matter.

The defense finished third in the league in points allowed during the second half of the regular season and Geno Atkins the defensive tackle who is an All-Pro returns along with Pro Bowler Carlos Dunlap who will play on the edge.

The only weak link on the defense is its pass rush put between Jordan Willis, Carl Lawson, Andrew Billings and Marcus Hardison there should be help to play alongside Atkins.

Cincinnati dropped back last season, but should battle with the Steelers and Ravens for the AFC North title, but will likely finish second to the Steelers.

Cincinnati Odds

AFC North – 3 to 1

AFC Championship – 16 to 1

Super Bowl LII – 60 to 1

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Monday, August 7th, 2017 2017 NFL

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