Week 2 Bengals look lost, unprepared in 30-12 meltdown

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CINCINNATI, OH - AUGUST 19: Andy Dalton #14 of the Cincinnati Bengals is sacked by Allen Bailey #97 of the Kansas City Chiefs during the preseason game at Paul Brown Stadium on August 19, 2017 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - AUGUST 19: Andy Dalton #14 of the Cincinnati Bengals is sacked by Allen Bailey #97 of the Kansas City Chiefs during the preseason game at Paul Brown Stadium on August 19, 2017 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /
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The Cincinnati Bengals took a few steps back, on Saturday night. Their loss to the Chiefs should bring about some sobering dialogue on things to fix.

If you had a chance to witness the insanity at Paul Brown Stadium, you probably came away scratching your head. The Bengals suffered their first loss of the preseason and looked bad while doing it. For the first half of the game, the starters looked helpless against the AFC West champion Chiefs. Additionally, it was the feeling of being unprepared that made a comeback. Cincinnati was no more than a bump in the road for KC.

No homer likes to see the carnage that happened on Saturday night. But, a football purist is willing to look at the damage for what it truly was. The Cincinnati Bengals took the field with an air of confidence. But, that small amount of adrenaline was quickly replaced with confusion and lack of execution. The shocking revelation is a sobering one. How did the Bengals go from looking like a sound team with decent depth to a punching bag, in a week?

There were implications that this was going to happen. Yes, it was in the stars during the first half of the Tampa game. The Buccaneers were able to do the same thing. While the Bengals’ first team defense was on the field, they were able to produce a 12-play drive and score first. Usually, that’s not much to be concerned about. In the past, the Bengals’ defense has been able to rebound. In essence, they bend but don’t break. This time, they collapsed.

Overconfidence? 

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If there’s one aspect of the game Cincinnati has no time for its being overconfident. That’s the moment when mistakes shine through. Calm down. It’s not that the Bengals don’t have the talent to be contenders in the AFC North. What they haven’t earned the right to do is be cocky.

There are tons of talented vets and rookies on this version of the Bengals. But, they are far from the 1981 and ‘88 squads that were (dare we say it) disciplined enough to have an attitude. Whether it was just a dry, emotionless run-through or a return to Bungles football, it didn’t look good. At the risk of bruising a few egos, Kansas City looked like they want to win the AFC West again. The Bengals looked like they’re just trying to survive.

It’s funny how a loss can suddenly bring the truth tumbling down like a summer avalanche. But, those moments are necessary to get a dialogue going that can change the current situation.

Take A Look In The Mirror

The end result was a beat down that won’t really matter, in the grand scheme of the preseason landscape. Yet, there will still be time for reflection and the task of fixing what ails this team. Josh Shaw summed up the annihilation of the Orange & Black, per Bengals.com. Whether he was speaking on the team as a whole or just defensively, his words ring true.

"“We take pride every time we go on the field to play to our capabilities. Today it’s not a secret we didn’t do that. They were very efficient. It’s nothing we hadn’t seen. Every man in the locker room will tell you that we have to play better. You expect to go out there and build on that and today we took a step back.”"

Next: Kansas City Wrangles The Stripes

What most fans expected became a reality on Saturday evening. After a promising Week 1 debut, the Bengals slid a few notches backward. There were certainly highlights to glean from the loss but very few. The best thing about the beat down? It’s still preseason. Hopefully, it gets fixed in the mix.

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