Week 18 vs. Baltimore Ravens
Because the Ravens are the Bengals' direct AFC North rivals, of course. Following a crushing 19-17 loss to the Ravens in Week 5, the Bengals enter what could be another high-stakes matchup in the season finale.
Bengals fans will still hold those two blowout 2021 wins in the Ravens' faces, but history won't matter in Week 18. Winning does, and whoever comes out on top could be crowned as the AFC North winner.
Baltimore found a way to contain Cincy's pass offense in Week 5, limiting Burrow to only 217 passing yards; the Bengals’ receivers also recorded zero completions over 14 air yards.
Even though neither team was incredibly impressive, the Bengals' flaws were more apparent -- specifically, their questionable play-calling in the most clutch moments of the game.
Why go for a shovel pass on that goal line touchdown attempt? Why not just hand it to Joe Mixon, who had been running well that game? Why can't Ja'Marr Chase get more open looks (it's not just because of defenses)?
These are questions Zac Taylor must answer throughout the season. With a little bit of luck, he can still right this ship.
On the flip side, he could also cost the Bengals a playoff spot in 2022.