The Cincinnati Bengals have won the AFC North the last two seasons.
In 2023, Cincinnati will be looking to win the division for a third straight season — something that’s never happened in Bengals franchise history.
It won’t be an easy task. The AFC North is one of the toughest divisions in the NFL. Even the Cleveland Browns, the team that most analysts predict to finish last in the division, have a playoff-caliber roster.
While the division will be a tough go all season, it’s important to remember that the Bengals have something that the rest of the teams in the division don’t have.
The young superstar quarterback has quickly proved to be one of the biggest X-Factors in the NFL. Cincy is essentially never out of a game with Burrow under center. His steady calmness combined with his elite leadership abilities makes the Bengals a yearly threat to win it all.
Burrow’s presence is also a big reason why CBS Sports is predicting that Cincinnati will win a tough AFC North division race in 2023.
CBS Sports has the Bengals going 13-4 in 2023 and beating the Ravens by one game in the AFC North. They have the Pittsburgh Steelers finishing third in the division at 9-8. CBS Sports has the Cleveland Browns going 7-10 this season (they have the Ravens making the playoffs as a wild card team at 12-5).
From CBS Sports: The Bengals have never been AFC North champs for three straight seasons. Last year was just their 12th divisional title and just the second time they repeated as divisional champs. Joe Burrow is pretty good! This year would have been a cakewalk, too, barring something strange, if Baltimore hadn’t gotten its act together and inked Lamar Jackson to a long-term deal. Jackson’s presence definitely makes this divisional race much more interesting.
I’ve still got the Bengals squeaking it out, although in very narrow fashion with the Ravens projecting as the top wild-card team in the AFC. I love Todd Monken’s addition as offensive coordinator plus the weapons Baltimore grabbed for Lamar this offseason. The Steelers were definitely close to being a wild-card team in my model; Matt Canada is very meh but I like what they’ve done to the roster.
Burrow and the Bengals will be getting everyone’s best shot this season, so they’ll have to be locked in each week. But the good news is that this team seems to have no issues getting “locked in”. With Burrow and head coach Zac Taylor leading the charge, this Cincinnati squad is ready for whatever challenge is tossed their way.