The Cincinnati Bengals kick off the 2022 regular season against their hated foe, the Pittsburgh Steelers. It's the first time these two have faced each other in Week 1 and it's the perfect time for the stripes to host them in the season opener considering the last time we saw them in action, it was in their Super Bowl loss.
The Bengals will be hungry and motivated to win against their hated foes, who for the longest time had their number. This past year showed that the tides may be turning in the Bengals-Steelers rivalry, as Cincinnati swept Pittsburgh and did so in blowout fashion in both games last year.
So, with that in mind, who are the experts picking in this AFC North showdown?
- Pete Prisco of CBS Sports: Bengals 23, Steelers 20
- John Breech of CBS Sports: Bengals 23, Steelers 20
- Gil Alcaraz IV of NFL Spin Zone: Bengals 31, Steelers 27
- Bill Bender of Sporting News: Bengals 30, Steelers 20
The experts were unanimous on picking the reigning AFC champions to defeat their hated rival this weekend and it's not surprising as to why that is. First and foremost, the Steelers are without Ben Roethlisberger after he retired following their loss to the Chiefs in the playoffs. Mitch Trubisky is the starter in Week 1 and while he's not as bad as people say he is, he's not Big Ben, who notoriously had the Bengals' number throughout his career.
In unsurprising fashion, however, only one of the experts above picked the Bengals to win by more than a touchdown. Everyone else felt that this would be a close game. The Steelers haven't had a losing record in nearly 20 years so Bengals fans shouldn't count them out in this game or throughout the season. They're a well-run organization who knows how to win games even when they shouldn't.
As for my pick, I'd have to agree with the experts that the Cincinnati Bengals will win this game. I'll go with a 24-20 Bengals victory to kick off the 2022 season.