Zac Taylor reveals hidden advantage of Bengals’ 2023 schedule

Zac Taylor reveals hidden advantage of Bengals' 2023 schedule

For the second consecutive year, the Cincinnati Bengals will take on a first-place schedule as the reigning AFC North champions. But strength of schedule is just one factor of a team’s season slate.

What a head coach cares about more is when the team’s bye week is placed.

Zac Taylor has benefitted from Week 9 and 10 byes in all four years he’s led the Bengals. His fifth year on the job will involved working around a slightly earlier bye in Week 7.

Zac Taylor reveals hidden advantage of Bengals' 2023 schedule

That means the Bengals are scheduled for 11-straight weeks of games leading up to the playoffs, and only one postseason team in each conference gets the benefit of a January bye week.

Luckily, the Bengals’ lone Thursday night game of the year takes place in Week 11, four weeks after their bye. Playing in the middle of the week will give the team the weekend off before finishing the final seven weeks of the season.

It’s a silver lining in Taylor’s eyes when combined with an earlier bye than usual.

“I think it’s spaced out,” Taylor said of the two breaks on Dave Lapham In The Trenches.

Zac Taylor reveals hidden advantage of Bengals' 2023 schedule

“You know, you don’t get to choose when you’re by week is and so it’s going to be a little earlier this year. But you do get that Thursday night game in November … So that’s good for us. And, we’ll just just be ready to grind through it after that.”

Taylor also mentioned that the Bengals’ Monday night game in Week 13 also brings an extra day off in December. It’s one of four night matchups Cincinnati has on the docket this year.

The Bengals making back-to-back trips to the AFC Championship game has a lot to do with their success in December and early January. Since the 2021 season, the team is 8-3 in regular season games in the last and first month of the year.

Zac Taylor reveals hidden advantage of Bengals' 2023 schedule

Staying healthy and refreshed are definite factors that went into winning games leading up to the playoffs. Taylor and Co. will have to get creative with this year’s schedule to emulate similar results.


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