Here we go again. Two AFC heavyweights enter the ring in Week 13 with huge playoff implications, and the Cincinnati Bengals no longer have the benefit of the doubt.
Call the Bengals' first win against the Kansas City Chiefs in 2021 luck. Call the second one skill. This third one is...completely up in the air.
The Bengals came off an incredible victory over the Tennessee Titans in Week 12, but this will be their toughest matchup of the season by far.
Here are the Chiefs players who could get their revenge in Week 13.
Patrick Mahomes has a score to settle with the Bengals. The alien quarterback got bested twice last season but remains the superior quarterback to Joe Burrow by talent, production, and experience. That's just a fact.
Burrow could climb his way up to Mahomes' greatness given some time, yet if Mahomes puts together a perfect performance on Sunday, there's no beating him.
The Bengals may not be scared of the Chiefs after 2021, but Mahomes' stats are still downright threatening. Here are just a few:
With Mahomes as their quarterback, the Chiefs are 8-1 in regular season games when facing teams that beat them in the previous season.
Mahomes won his 59th career game against the Los Angeles Rams in Week 11, making him the winningest quarterback through 75 starts in NFL history.
Mahomes is on pace for 5,540 passing yards this season which would set a new NFL record.
He's not invincible, yet even Bengals fans have to admit he's the best in the league right now.
The Bengals' run game may face tough opposition in Week 13, especially from linebacker Nick Bolton who has been putting together an All-Pro season.
Bolton showed his big-play ability in the last two weeks, recording a pick apiece against the Los Angeles Chargers and Los Angeles Rams. He has 106 tackles, four quarterback hits, two sacks, and one forced fumble and has proven he can do it all wherever he is on the field.
Cincy will hopefully get Joe Mixon back in the lineup, though Bolton and the rest of Kansas City's run defense may not give the Bengals anything to work with on the ground.
The Bengals figured out how to limit Derrick Henry last week, but we're not sure they have an answer for one of the best tight ends of all time, Travis Kelce.
Kelce has 12 receiving touchdowns this season, which ties or bests 10 NFL teams. Let that sink in.
His red-zone production (as a tight end!) is unparalleled, and when he finds open space, he's nearly unstoppable. Look at the way he blew past three Rams defenders to run it into the end zone in Week 12:
It's just rare to see Travis Kelce having a bad game. Lou Anarumo will have his toughest challenge yet trying to figure out how to contain the monster tight end.
Could Chris Jones be the DPOY in 2022? We wouldn't count it out.
Jones has arguably surpassed Aaron Donald as the best defensive tackle this season and is without a doubt the Chiefs' biggest playmaker on the defense. The seventh year pass-rusher has eight sacks in his last six games, which is ridiculous given his position. Only a select handful of pass-rushers (Matthew Judon, Nick Bosa, Micah Parsons) boast better sack production this year.
Cincy's offensive line has gotten better at protecting Joe Burrow week after week, and Burrow himself has the tactical awareness and quick feet to get out of pressures.
That being said, Jones is on an absolute tear right now and has his eyes on Joey B in a highly anticipated revenge game.
We, for one, are just happy to watch a good game of football. Let's see who reigns over the AFC in Week 13.