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The 2007 Cincinnati Bengals schedule released

As football fans, we get really really excited when something happens in the off-season; free agency, draft, combines, workouts, rookie symposiums and naked coaches driving through late-night fast food restaurants. The league, about a week late, released the 2007 NFL schedule. The Bengals were given FOUR prime-time games -- two Monday Night games, a Sunday night game and a Saturday night game. First, the schedule.

Week Date Time Opponent NOTES
1 Sep. 10 7 pm Baltimore First Monday Night game of the season.
2 Sep. 16 1 pm @ Cleveland The Bengals are riding a five-game winning streak against the Browns.
3 Sep. 23 4 pm @ Seattle The last time the Bengals played in Seattle, they lost 20-37 on November 7, 1999.
4 Oct. 1 8:30 pm New England Monday Night Football. The last time the Bengals beat New England was in 2001. The Patriots have won five of the past six meetings.
5 BYE      
6 Oct. 14 1 pm @ Kansas City Neither the Chiefs or the Bengals have won back-to-back games against each other the Chiefs won in '84 and '86.
7 Oct. 21 4 pm N.Y. Jets The last time the Jets played the Bengals, Carson Palmer made his first NFL start. The Bengals lost on a last-drive interception by Palmer.
8 Oct. 28 1 pm Pittsburgh Who?
9 Nov. 4 1 pm @ Buffalo Last time the Bengals beat Buffalo: November 27, 1988 -- eight straight defeats.
10 Nov. 11 4 pm @ Baltimore The Bengals have beaten the Ravens in four of their past five meetings.
11 Nov. 18 1 pm Arizona The Bengals have only met the Cardinals eight times in the regular season. The Bengals own a 5-3 record in the all-time series.
12 Nov. 25 1 pm Tennessee The Bengals are on a five-game losing streak when hosting the Titans. The last time the Bengals won was a Thursday night game in 1997 -- 41-14.
13 Dec. 2 8:15 pm @ Pittsburgh Sunday Night Football
14 Dec. 9 1 pm St. Louis The Bengals haven't beaten the Rams since December 19, 1993.
15 Dec. 15 8:15 pm @ San Francisco Saturday Night
16 Dec. 23 1 pm Cleveland At this point, the Bengals will now have a six-game winning streak against the Browns.
17 Dec. 30 1 pm @ Miami The Joey Porter vs. Levi Jones rematch.

ESPN, about an hour before the official schedule release, published a strength of schedule. The Bengals were listed at 10th. The strongest schedule for an NFC team ranks 15th in the NFL -- which means the NFC is like the JV league.