Bengals and Raiders are in a similar spot entering Week 11

Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images) /

Just three weeks ago, the Cincinnati Bengals were on top of the NFL world. They were fresh off a blowout win over the hated Baltimore Ravens and with that win, moved to the No. 1 overall seed in the AFC.

Well, life came at the Bengals fast.

In Week 8, they were upended by the-then one-win New York Jets, who were being led by Mike White. It was an embarrassing loss for a team whose fans finally started to feel confident in moving forward.

The next week — against the Cleveland Browns — Cincinnati was embarrassed once more, but this time in blowout fashion. The game was over by halftime and we were all left wondering — “Who is this Cincinnati Bengals team?” 

Bengals and Raiders are in must-win situations in Week 11

Las Vegas Raiders fans are feeling the same way. They, too, got off to a hot 5-2 start and looked like they might finally rip the AFC West crown from the Chiefs, who were stumbling through the first seven weeks of the season.

Since that 5-2 start, however, the Raiders have dropped a winnable game to the Giants and then were blown out by Kansas City on Sunday Night Football. People felt like this was eventually going to happen to Vegas considering all of their drama off the field.

It’s ironic that these two teams now find themselves in a must-win situation after being at the top of their respective divisions three weeks ago, but that’s how quickly things change in the NFL. The AFC is totally up for grabs right now and the winner of this game keeps themselves in prime position to contend for a better seed in the playoffs.

While the loser isn’t anywhere out of the playoff hunt, their journey in trying to get there will definitely be more difficult.

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With both the AFC North and AFC West being wide open, this game on Sunday should reflect two teams doing whatever it takes to win.