3 things the Bengals must do in 2023 to return to the playoffs

AFC Divisional Playoffs - Cincinnati Bengals v Buffalo Bills
AFC Divisional Playoffs - Cincinnati Bengals v Buffalo Bills / Bryan M. Bennett/GettyImages
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1. Run the football 

Something the Bengals had during their Super Bowl run two years ago was something they did not have last season. Joe Mixon had a career-low season in most of his rushing totals for the number of games that he appeared in. Cincinnati also lost Samaje Perine in free agency who picked up a lot of Mixon’s slack when he was struggling or injured.

 Now, the Bengals are faced with some questions that need to be answered by the time the season starts. It seems like Joe Mixon will remain the back and he is more than capable of returning to form, However, Cincinnati will now need to figure out who will take the place of Perine, or if it will be a running back by committee. 

The job seems to be between rookie Chase Brown, Chris Evans, and Trayveon Williams. Both Williams and Evans have played key roles on special teams for the Bengals, and now they may see an opportunity to see action every single game at their true position

 But Chase Brown is a workhorse and showed that during his collegiate career at Illinois. Brown could very well step into an important role and that could be why they selected him on Day 3 of this year's draft. He is a downhill runner and a three-tool back. He can run through the gaps, he can catch passes and is sound in pass-blocking schemes. 


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We will have to see how well he translates that to the NFL level but for now, based on what we've seen, he is not one to get pushed around easily. Mixon will be the key factor at the end of the day. He needs to be effective for the Bengals to reach their ultimate peak as Super Bowl champs, and playoff returners but the other three backs on the depth chart will need to play their part.