Cincinnati Bengals are the 2013 AFC North Champions

Andy Lyons

Your Cincinnati Bengals are the 2013 AFC North champions!

The Cincinnati Bengals are the 2013 AFC North Champions.

The division title is the third in the past nine seasons (2005, 2009) and the first since 2009. Cincinnati's postseason berth on Sunday was also the first time in franchise history that they've qualified for the playoffs in three consecutive years. One more note on all of that, their win over the Vikings gave Cincinnati ten wins on the season -- it's the first time they've had double-digit wins in back-to-back years since '75-76.

Heading into week 16, the Cincinnati Bengals needed one of two scenarios to play out for them to clinch a spot for the 2013 playoffs. Both required the Bengals to beat the Vikings, which they did 42-14 at Paul Brown Stadium. If the Miami Dolphins lost, the Bengals would clinch a postseason berth. That happened. If the New England Patriots beat the Baltimore Ravens, then Cincinnati would clinch the AFC North by improving to a two-game advantage with one game remaining. That happened.

Cincinnati is assured of at least one home game in the playoffs, where they've won eight straight games dating back to 2012 where they've scored at least 40 points in four straight.

If they're the No. 2 seed, then they'll host the highest-seeded team after the wild card round and the Denver Broncos will host the lowest-seeded team (aka, if the No. 6 seed wins, then they'll play the Broncos no matter what else happens). If the Bengals are the No. 3 seed, then they'll host the No. 6 seed.

Ah, hell. Who cares.

AFC North Champions!

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