Bengals Losing Streak Pushing Franchise Records

Remember how bad 2008 was? And yet, we commended them for their effort but understood with the injuries and terrible rushing offense, that team wasn't going anywhere. It was moral victories at its finest. Once we got Carson Palmer back, we argued, we'll be fine. Instead Cedric Benson looked more and more comfortable in the offense, knocking out 282 yards rushing during Cincinnati's final two games of the season -- all of which translated into 2009, with Palmer's return and a defense that ranked fourth in the league. Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis won the AP Coach of the Year award for a six-win improvement from 2008 to 2009 and nothing but awesome improvements spiked expectations ever further.

Nearly five months later...

Along with going winless for the first time in franchise history during the months of October and November in the same year, the Cincinnati Bengals will face a nine-game losing streak if they lose to the New Orleans Saints this weekend. If that happens (the Bengals are seven-point underdogs as of Monday morning) it will be the longest losing streak in Marvin Lewis' tenure. That much futility wasn't even seen during Cincinnati's 2-14 season, which is the worst Bengals season of all-time. Cincinnati recorded two long losing streaks that year (seven and six games), but never nine games. We had to go back 12 years (1998) to find the last time Cincinnati lost nine games in a row. From October 18 through December 13, the Bengals lost nine games straight -- most of which were losses by more than a touchdown. It wasn't until December 20 that Cincinnati would win again that year, beating the Pittsburgh Steelers 25-24. Jeff Blake recorded 367 yards passing that day, with Darnay Scott hauling in 152 yards receiving.

The oddity is that if Cincinnati loses to the New Orleans Saints, expanding their losing streak to nine games, they will face the Pittsburgh Steelers the following week. And who says history doesn't repeat itself. Yet Cincinnati still has to lose another three games to tie their longest losing streak all-time, losing 11 games from December 27, 1992 through November 21, 1993.

Here's the team's all-time losing streaks.

Season Date Began Date Ended Games
1992-1993 December 27, 1992 November 21, 1993 11
1990-1991 January 13, 1991* October 27, 1991 9
1998 October 18 December 13 9
1993-1994 January 2, 1994 October 30, 1994 9
1977-1978 December 18, 1977 October 22, 1978 9
2010 October 3 November 25 8
2008 September 7 October 26 8
2002 September 8 October 27 7
2001 November 11 December 23 7
1971 September 26 November 7 7
1068 September 29 November 10 7
2002 November 10 December 15 6
2000 September 10 October 15 6
1999 October 17 November 21 6
1979 September 2 October 7 6
1970 September 27 November 2 6
* Playoff game

Longest Losing Streaks During Marvin Lewis' Tenure (playoff games included):

Season Date Began Date Ended Games
2010 October 3 November 25 8
2008 September 7 October 26 8
2007 September 16 October 14 4
2009 January 3, 2009 September 12, 2010 3
2006 October 29 November 12 3
2006 December 18 December 31 3
2005 September 26 October 17 3
2005 December 24 January 8* 3
2003 September 7 September 21 3
2003-4 December 21, 2003 September 12 3
* Playoff game
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