Given the fact that the Cincinnati Bengals had managed to reach the Super Bowl and were only beaten late in the game by the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium, there will have been many of the Bengal Nation that will have been hoping that a quick return to the main game would have been on the cards.
Still is at the moment, with the organization going toe-to-toe with the Baltimore Ravens in the AFC North. Both teams currently find themselves with records of 7-4, but the Maryland-based franchise currently sit top of the division.
Nonetheless, there is the possibility that all of that could change for the Ohio franchise, as the team still has to host the Ravens in the final game of the regular season; a game that could be incredibly pressurized and one that could make or break a season for either franchise.
Bengals players playing well so far
Of course, if the scenario mentioned above presents itself, both teams will want to have their players playing as well as they have been throughout the entire season so far. Indeed, the Bengals have had many stars on their roster performing rather well thus far, therefore there will be many in Ohio that may feel they are in a good position to do what they need to get done on the gridiron in the final six games of the regular season.
Let’s take a look at some of the best players on the team so far this season…
Joe Burrow is a natural starting point on this list, with the quarterback seemingly going from strength to strength with each season that he plays for the Bengals. After suffering a torn ACL and MCL in his rookie season, he managed to bounce back the following year and lead the organization to the Super Bowl; ending unwanted streaks in the process and setting new records.
The 25-year-old is only in his third year in the NFL this season, however he continues to play as if he has been in the league for a longer period of time. Burrow remains a calm influence on the field and a leader of his team, as he continues to put up some impressive numbers.
As of writing, he has managed to throw for 3,160 passing yards, which have resulted in 23 touchdowns. He has recorded eight interceptions this season, however that is a figure that is nothing to be concerned about given that we have played 11 games thus far this season. Two of those eight INTs came in the 37-30 victory over AFC North rivals, the Pittsburgh Steelers, but the team clearly still got the job done.
If Burrow can continue his fine form, there will not be many that will be doubting the team’s chances of reaching the postseason and being successful once again.
Another of the standouts this year is Joe Mixon; a player that has gotten many Ohio fans extremely excited with what is happening on the field.
Even when it comes to the bookies, Mixon’s odds and player prop bets are some of the best you can find at the moment. Although sportsbooks in Ohio are not taking bets just yet, residents can still register early and have a good look around the site. There’s only a few weeks left till the official sports betting launch so it’s worth getting an idea of the stats early on such as touchdowns, and the running back odds.
Mixon’s got six rushing TDs thus far, while also having a further two via pass receptions. So far, he’s one player that has proven to have great potential and has gained him quite some popularity with Bengals fans.
Furthermore, Mixon has been putting in the hard yards for his six touchdowns, as he has rushed for 605 yards at 3.8 yards per carry, with a long of 31 yards having also been achieved. With the RB in the form he is currently in, the run game certainly looks to be as effective and potent as it needs to be.
It would be impossible to talk about the best players of the season for the Cincinnati Bengals without mentioning Ja’Marr Chase, with the wide receiver having been exceptional ever since he was drafted out of LSU in 2021.
Of course, this is perhaps hardly a surprise because he knows Burrow from his college days, but doing it in college and in the NFL are two different things; not that you would know if you had been watching these two in tandem.
Chase has been able to continue his explosive start to life in the NFL by being as productive with the ball once again, as he has six receiving touchdowns; leading the team in this stat metric once again. Things have been slow for the WR this season, though, as four of those six TDs have come in the last two games, but it appears that he is hotting up when he is needed most.
While Chase may have been kept quiet, there is no doubt that the Bengals have found Tee Higgins stepping up when he has been needed most. The WR, who was drafted in the second round in 2020 out of Clemson, has been an effective player for the sports franchise, with fans in Ohio having seen him consistently produce good numbers.
Over the last two seasons, he has managed to get six receiving touchdowns in both campaigns and looks set to achieve this once again as he has four on the year so far. However, he currently leads the team in receiving yards as he has become a top weapon for Burrow. He has 826 yards so far, as he has managed an average of 14.5 yards per carry on the 57 receptions he has had.
The defense has performed well
While we have highlighted many of the players on the offensive side of the ball, it is also important to note that the defense has been solid.
Vonn Bell has been a machine in terms of interceptions as he has managed to pick four so far this year, while Trey Hendrickson has 6.0 sacks on the year. Additionally, Germaine Pratt has been a monster for the defense regarding tackles, as he has managed to achieve 74 this season thus far.
Clearly, the entire Bengals’ roster is performing as well as it needs to be and many will be confident that they can do what they need to do in the final six games of the regular season in order to progress and return to the postseason in back-to-back seasons.
Whether they can compete for the Super Bowl is up for debate, but if the players mentioned above can continue to be as productive as they have been, then there is every chance they could challenge once again!