When was the last time the Bengals secured a playoff win?

Bengals QB Boomer Esiason 1990 season
Bengals QB Boomer Esiason 1990 season
Wesley D Keefer

For the first time since 2015, the Cincinnati Bengals won the AFC North division. After going 10-6 in Week 17, the Bengals clinched their tenth AFC North title.

They now have a chance to secure the No. 1 seed in the playoffs for the first time since 1988, when there were only five playoff teams per conference.

As Cincinnati heats up at an ideal time with the postseason just two weeks away, it makes fans look back at the team's playoff history, and many don't wish to relive it. It hasn't been pretty for Cincy over the years, but when was the last time they even won a playoff game?

Bengals QB Joe Burrow smoking a cigar and getting the gat after winning the AFC North:

Bengals have not won a playoff game in the 21st century

Cincinnati has had 15 trips to the postseason since 1970, meaning they made the playoffs in 23 percen of the last 51 seasons. That's not the greatest percentage in the NFL, but the Bengals did have a great run from 2009 to 2015, missing the playoffs only once in that span.

2021 marks their first time back since the 2015 season. While Cincy were on a decent playoff streak in the early 2010s, they didn't produce much in that time.

The Bengals last playoff win was January 6, 1991… 31 years ago!! Time to exorcise some demons.

Marvin Lewis was their infamous head coach from 2003 to 2018. He was there when the Bengals made the playoffs for five straight years from 2011 to 2015.

Sadly, Marvin Lewis' Bengals never won a playoff game the entire time. Lewis took his team to the wildcard playoffs a total of seven times and finished 0-7.

The last time Cincinnati fans were able to celebrate a playoff victory was during the 1990 season in the wildcard round over the Houston Oilers.

The modern Bengals seem better built for a playoff run behind young quarterback Joe Burrow. He has plenty of weapons around him, including potential Rookie of the Year wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase and running back Joe Mixon, who is ranked second in the NFL in rushing yards.

The defense isn't a top powerhouse, but they have pieces spread across the depth chart that help make an impact on the field.

The AFC is fairly weak in the playoffs compared to the NFC this season. Cincinnati could get a first-round matchup against a struggling team like the Pittsburgh Steelers or the Las Vegas Raiders.

Getting the bye week would be convenient as well, but then their first playoff win in over 30 years may have to come from beating the New England Patriots or darkhorses Indianapolis Colts.


2021 has been a major win for Cincinnati regardless of how they play in the playoffs, but a win would be the plump cherry on top.

If they get the No. 1 seed or a wildcard win, they would be in good position to reach the AFC Championship. After beating the Kansas City Chiefs last week, Cincy could find themselves the favorites to reach the Super Bowl, which they have never won in franchise history.

Also check out: Dallas Cowboys Playoff History, Appearances, Wins and more

Edited by Piyush Bisht


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