Cincinnati Bengals 2014 schedule
by Mark Neal
posted Apr 24 2014 1:04PM
The NFL is an amazing league! Salary caps and non guaranteed contracts, among other things, allow teams to exist in Green Bay and Indianapolis, as well as New York and Chicago! Because of those rules, the NFL is thriving, and most every market has a chance at success each year.
I mean, how many teams in the NFL absolutely have no chance at winning or making the playoffs in 2014? It's hard to put a number on that, but very few fall into that category. Teams go from worst to 1st in their division every year, this year will be no different.
That also makes predicting how difficult a schedule is going to be very tough. X factors like injuries and slumps can take a playoff team like Houston, and have them drafting 1st with the league's worst record. Saying you know definatively how a team will play each season is a near impossible prediction...save for a few clubs.
The Cincinnati Bengals' schedule looks daunting for 2014. The AFC North is the AFC North...brutal, physical and packed with great rivalries. Even a Browns team that has fallen on hard luck recently is never a guarantee to sweep. But that only makes up 6 of the 16 games. The division is also paired up with the AFC South and NFC South, divisions that sent 3 teams to the playoffs last season.
On the one hand, you could say the Bengals only play 5 games versus playoff teams from a season ago. On the other hand, as I said earlier, that isn't always the best gauge of schedule difficulty. In a Quarterback driven league, they certainly play some great signal callers this year. Flacco twice, Brady, Newton, Luck, Ryan, and Peyton Manning highlight a schedule filled with some of the NFL best at the position.
The Bengals have become playoff staples over the past few seasons. Who knows how the season will end up playing out, but the road to those playoffs will not be easy. The NFL did them no favors pairing them with the Patriots and Broncos as their "Wild Card" teams on the schedule. It is definitely "show us what you are made of" time in the Queen City for 2014.