I'm not taking them seriously. They barely eeked out a win over a pretty bad Pittsburgh team. They aren't anywhere close to as good as the Giants, Broncos, Redskins, or really any team that has given the Ravens fits. The only thing that matters here is the Ravens have nothing to play for. They might as well rest everyone and just beat the shit out of Cincy in the playoffs.
We hear this every single season the Bengals eek their way into the playoffs and then they collapse. Bad management means they will always just be flukes. I suspect the Patriots will destroy and embarrass them in the wildcard round.
Here we go with this again. First, it was the wise one near the beginning of the season (GOTA). Now, Leach is putting his own thread into the mix.
I will say this. They have shown a resiliency uncommon in Cincinnati, in years passed. However, Dalton and Co. have yet to beat the Ravens once, this is just the type of game that they'll lose (A meaningless game, following an emotionally charged victory in Pittsburgh) and they'll likely have to play New England in the first round.
Does anybody honestly expect them to go into New England and take down the Patriots? Brady is going to work that cover-2 scheme. It will be a matchup nightmare. A.J. Green will make it entertaining, but that will be it.
Back to back playoff appearances show the Bengals are a good team. They're young and talented, and Marvin Lewis is a good head coach. Working for the Ravens- and everyone else in the division- is Mike Brown. He's always had a crappy organization, and he hasn't shown yet that he's willing or able to fix that.
So, until they show me otherwise, I'm going to consider the Steelers the bigger threat in the division. Yes, this was a down year. They've had them before. But that's a good organization that knows how to put a quality football team on the field. They've earned the expectation that they'll put a contender on the field next year, just like the Ravens have.