9. Week 15 vs. Buccaneers (Final Score 34-23)
Sort of like the Patriots game, except this time the Bengals played an awful first half and had an amazing second half, thanks to an outstanding defensive performance that forced four turnovers on the Tom Brady-led Bucs. I'd much rather the Bengals be a better second-half team than a first-half team.
What brings this one down is just how terrible that first half was to watch. Going down 17-0 (17-3 at half), the offense looked completely lethargic, the defense was allowing 5-yard passes to go for 20-30 yards. Thankfully, Lou Anarumo proved once again to be the King of Second-Half Adjustments and the defense stepped up big time, allowing the offense to excel under the opportunities given to them.
8. Week 4 vs. Dolphins (Final Score 27-15)
The Bengals' first time wearing all-white, including the sleek new helmets, was a very exciting occasion. And it was for a very fitting matchup, as this was the first time we'd see Joe Burrow vs. Tua Tagovailoa in the NFL, the No. 1 overall pick vs the No. 5 overall pick from the 2020 NFL Draft. This QB matchup would unfortunately never come to full fruition, as the Alabama product would go down with a scary head injury before halftime.
The rest of the game was pretty mundane on top of that, the only things I remember from it was the Tyler Boyd pass to Chase and Burrow's deep shot to Chase late in the fourth to effectively seal the game. It was nice to see the alternate 'White Tiger' helmets, but I wish we had a better, more entertaining game in their debut.
Though, if I was at PBS/Paycor, I'm sure I would've ranked this game higher. I can't imagine how amazing the atmosphere was with the White Out.
7. Week 3 vs. Jets (Final Score 27-12)
After a terrible 0-2 start to kick off the 2022 campaign, it was incredibly relieving that they marched into MetLife and got things back on track. Beating Joe Flacco was just icing on the cake, and this was sort of a revenge match after last year when (at the time) an unknown quarterback named Mike White marched all over the Bengals' defense in one of the most stunning upsets of the year.
The main reason this isn't higher is the fact that the Bengals slowed it down after halftime. After going up 20-9, they'd only score one more touchdown less than three minutes into the third quarter before proceeding to coast into an easy victory. Not that I'm downing on the decision to do so, it was smart not to risk injury.
Oh, also Cincy lost D.J. Reader this game, which knocks it down more as we wouldn't see him return until after the BYE.