3 reasons the Cincinnati Bengals won’t win the Super Bowl anytime soon

Super Bowl LVI - Los Angeles Rams v Cincinnati Bengals
Super Bowl LVI - Los Angeles Rams v Cincinnati Bengals
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Matthew Wear

The Cincinnati Bengals reached their first Super Bowl in 33 years during the 2021 NFL season, where they narrowly lost to the Los Angeles Rams, with a score of 23-20.

Led by quarterback Joe Burrow, they went on a fairytale playoff run after clinching the AFC North title, beating the Las Vegas Raiders on Wildcard Weekend to record their first playoff win since 1990. They, then, won back-to-back road playoff wins against the Tennessee Titans and Kansas City Chiefs on the road to Super Bowl LVI.

Burrow and rookie Ja’Marr Chase’s LSU connection was felt immediately in the NFL, with Chase beating former teammate Justin Jefferson’s rookie receiving yards record, putting up 1,455 yards to go along with 13 touchdowns.

The future might seem bright in Cincinnati, but here are three reasons why the Bengals won’t win the Super Bowl anytime soon.

3 reasons the Cincinnati Bengals won’t win the Super Bowl anytime soon

#1 - Strength of the AFC

Despite teams from the NFC winning the two previous Super Bowls (Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2020 and Los Angeles Rams in 2021), it’s widely acknowledged across the league that the AFC is currently the superior conference in terms of roster talent and depth across the entire conference. During the 2022 offseason, Davante Adams moved to the Las Vegas Raiders, and Russell Wilson made the switch from the Seattle Seahawks to the Denver Broncos.

Seahawks and Broncos have agreed in principle on a trade sending QB Russell Wilson to Denver. (via @TomPelissero)

Joe Burrow's team's route through to the Super Bowl has just gotten a whole lot harder, and that’s without mentioning the long list of quarterbacks they have to go through to make it back to the big game. Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, Russell Wilson, Lamar Jackson, Justin Herbert and Deshaun Watson are all standing in the Cincinnati Bengals' way to making it to the Super Bowl, and barring any trades, they will do so for the foreseeable future.

They will also be facing Jackson and Watson twice a season in the AFC North, with the Pittsburgh Steelers being touted to select a quarterback high in the upcoming draft.

#2 - Secondary Issues

Super Bowl LVI - Los Angeles Rams v Cincinnati Bengals
Super Bowl LVI - Los Angeles Rams v Cincinnati Bengals

Despite making it to Super Bowl LVI, the Cincinnati secondary still had issues throughout the 2021 season. According to, the Bengals allowed an average of 248 passing yards per game, ranking 26th in the NFL. They found themselves in a lot of high scoring games in 2021, including a 34-31 win against the Kansas City Chiefs to seal the AFC North title. Being in multiple shootouts is fine if you’re still coming out on the winning side, but their luck surely won’t keep up if they don’t address the issues in their secondary.

They began revamping the unit during the 2022 offseason as they released veteran cornerback Trae Waynes, but they resigned Eli Apple, who is not only a liability on the field, but he is also a distraction off it, calling out Tyreek Hill following the Bengals’ AFC Championship win, before being trolled by various NFL superstars after his poor showing in the Super Bowl defeat to the L.A. Rams.

The Ravens really chirped at Eli Apple after the Super Bowl 😅

They will surely look for help in the secondary in the 2022 NFL Draft, but as they’re not selecting till 31st overall, they may miss out on top secondary talent.

#3 - Tougher Schedule

AFC Championship - Cincinnati Bengals v Kansas City Chiefs
AFC Championship - Cincinnati Bengals v Kansas City Chiefs

The Cincinnati Bengals went 10-7 during the 2021 season as they won the AFC North title for the first time since 2015. They finished at the bottom of the AFC North in 2020, meaning they would face other AFC teams at the bottom of their division, namely the New York Jets, Jacksonville Jaguars and Denver Broncos.

However, after clinching the AFC North title, the Bengals' strength of schedule will go up a notch for the 2022 season. They will now be facing the best of the best in the AFC, and will have to contend with them going forward if they’re going to establish themselves as one of the best teams in the NFL. The list of teams they will play in 2022 includes the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Kansas City Chiefs, Tennessee Titans, Buffalo Bills and Baltimore Ravens.

The schedule will look something like this for the foreseeable future, which is why we might not see them back in the big game for some time.

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Q. Will the Bengals make another Super Bowl in the next 5 years?



50 votes so far

Edited by Windy Goodloe
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