Why the Bengals can return to the Super Bowl next season
By: Jake Rajala
The Cincinnati Bengals were the Little Giants in Super Bowl LVI, but they added more firepower in the 2022 off-season. With that said, I’m going to simply untwine three reasons why the Bengals can return to the Super Bowl next season.
Improved pass protection
The Ja’Marr Chase show nearly won the Bengals their first Super Bowl, but Aaron Donald decided to end the game swiftly. The Bengals needed to improve their OL unit this off-season and they nicely added a couple of monster OL profiles. La’el Collins will be an excellent pass blocker on the edge, while Alex Cappa will be a sure-fire upgrade from the interior. The Bengals had the ninth-best offense in PPG last season, while Burrow was the most sacked QB. I trust that the Burrow-Chase connection will be more fruitful after the new wall in Cincy.
I honestly love the re-signing of the NFL’s darling Eli Apple. The former OSU stud and Twitter outcast may not have guarded Cooper Kupp well in the Super Bowl, but he quietly allowed the lowest passer rating in man coverage last season, per PFF. Love it or hate it, Apple will be a Day 1 starter in the Bengals pass defense for the second straight season.
I believe the Bengals should feel quite optimistic about their chances in two key divisional contests against the Lamar Jackson-led Baltimore Ravens for another season. The Bengals impressively dropped 41 points in each of their victories against the Ravens last season. The Ravens have a greek god-like secondary, but I still don’t the Hollywood Brown-less offense to go blow for blow against Burrow’s gang next season.