Bengals vs Cowboys: Biggest surprise from Week 2

Cincinnati Bengals v Dallas Cowboys
Cincinnati Bengals v Dallas Cowboys / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

The Cincinnati Bengals have started off their AFC title defense in dismal fashion. Playing two very beatable teams to start the season, the Bengals are 0-2 with more questions than answers. After the first week of the season, many thought the issues Cincinnati had would go away. However, there ended up being more problems.

With their 0-2 start, making the playoffs becomes much trickier because the history for these teams playing past the regular season in recent years isn't good.

Let's take a look at the biggest surprises from the Bengals' 20-17 loss to the Cowboys.

Biggest surprise from Bengals Week 2 loss

The biggest surprise in Week 2 was that the offense struggled once again. Steelers and Cowboys both have playmakers on defense, but with the additions Cincinnati made on offense, the expectations were much higher.

One of the big surprises from the last game was how poorly the offensive line played. Giving up six sacks with what should be a strength of the team, is not acceptable and could put not only this season but the future of the team at risk. The line has to improve to be able to get anywhere close to the electric unit they put on the field in 2021.

Last season, Ja'Marr Chase and Joe Burrow put the NFL on notice with how much their torched opposing defenses. Through the first two games, Burrow has not looked like the same quarterback. The Bengals are seeing a lot more looks with two-high safeties which have thrown a big wrench into what Cincinnati wants to do offensively. The reason this is so surprising is not necessarily that teams are throwing different defensive looks, but that the Bengals had an entire off-season and look very unprepared.

With the success Chase and Burrow had last year in creating huge plays, it was only a matter of time before teams started doing two-high safety looks. With two teams showing that they have clearly figured out a way to defend the Bengals, it is shocking that Zac Taylor was not able to get ahead of this trend and create a game plan from the beginning of the season to counter. The season is not lost, however, the Bengals are going to have to change what they do in order to find more success.

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Two areas that were the strength of the team on paper have ended up being two of the biggest question marks and issues for the team this year. The Bengals have their third winnable game this week for them to gel as an offensive unit before the meat of their schedule begins. If Taylor is not able to change the direction of the team, this could end up being a very disappointing year.