The Cincinnati Bengals entered what many perceived to be the difficult portion of their schedule this past week and they seemed completely unfazed. They hammered the 49ers by a score of 31-17 and now will get their next "tough" opponent in Week 9 when the Bills come to town for a Sunday night rumble in the Jungle.
Later on in the season, Week 15 to be exact, the Bengals are going to host the Minnesota Vikings in a late-season showdown. When the schedules were announced in May, this seemed like a tough game near the end of the season.
After the Vikings started 0-3, however, it became less of an intimidating game. Then, the Vikings turned things around to get to 4-4 but now it's all for naught as Kirk Cousins will miss the rest of the season with a torn Achilles.
Bengals vs. Vikings no longer a marquee match-up
Cousins might be a confusing quarterback sometimes but he gave the Vikings the best chance to win moving forward. They did trade for Josh Dobbs ahead of the deadline and Dobbs gave the Bengals all they could handle when they met up with him in the desert earlier this season. Whether it's Dobbs or rookie quarterback Jaren Hall at the helm, however, the Vikings aren't as scary as they would have been with Cousins.
This game could be the difference between the Bengals making the playoffs or watching from home or them winning the division or having to play in the postseason as a wild card team so the fact that it got a little easier is a plus. However, the fact that it's now "easier" because of an injury to a well-respected quarterback, that's unfortunate.
Here's to hoping that Cousins has a speedy recovery and can continue balling out next year and beyond (as long as it's not against the Cincinnati Bengals).
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