The Bengals have two games left in the season.
They still have a chance to end the season with some pride after getting destroyed the past two weeks. It hasn’t helped that the Marvin Lewis situation became more of a circus before the Bengals game last week.
Still, Cincinnati has two teams left on their schedule who are competing for playoff spots, and if they can’t make the playoffs, then they can at least try and keep those teams from making the playoffs.
The first on that list is the Lions. Detroit is right behind the Falcons who own the sixth seed in the NFC at the moment. They have won their last two games to stay in the hunt, but a loss could be catastrophic to their chances since the NFC also has the Seahawks and Cowboys at 8-6 as well.
The Lions have a seventh-best scoring offense, and one of the best passing offenses in the NFL. Their defense has still struggled despite the efforts of a few quality players. They rank near the bottom in every major defensive category except run defense which ranks 16th.
Everything you need to know for when the Bengals host the Lions:
Game: Cincinnati Bengals (5-9) at Detroit Lions (8-6)
Date/Time: Sunday, December 24th, 2017 1:00 p.m. EST
Location: Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio
Series Leader: Bengals lead the all-time series 8-3
Streak: Bengals have won the last five games
Coaches vs Opponent: Marvin Lewis (3-0), Jim Caldwell (1-1)
TV Broadcast: FOX broadcast with Thom Brennaman (play-by-play), Chris Spielman (analyst) and Jennifer Hale (sideline reporter). The game will air in Cincinnati on WXIX-TV (Channel 19). Additional regional FOX affiliates include WGRT-TV (Ch. 45) in Dayton, WTTE-TV (Ch. 28) in Columbus, WLIO-TV (Ch. 8.2) in Lima, WDKY-TV (Ch. 56) in Lexington, Ky. and WDRB-TV (Ch. 41) in Louisville, Ky.
Radio Broadcast: Coverage on the Bengals Radio Network, led by a “triple-cast” on Cincinnati flagship stations WLW-AM (700), WCKY-AM (1530; all sports) and WEBN-FM (102.7). Broadcasters are Dan Hoard (play-by-play) and Dave Lapham (analyst).
Lions’ SB Nation Website: Pride of Detroit
Weather: Mid 30’s; Overcast [NFL Weather]
Odds: The Bengals open as 3.5-point underdogs [Vegas Insider]
Uniforms: Black jersey with white pants; the Bengals are 32-32-1 in that combination since 2004.
- Andy Dalton has over two touchdown passes and no interceptions in three of the past four games at home. In his only career meeting with the Lions, Dalton completed 24 of 34 (70.6 pct.) passes for 372 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions for 135.9 passer rating. He has 2,860 pass yards and can join Peyton Manning as the only quarterbacks with over 3,000 passing yards in each of their first seven seasons.
- Joe Mixon has 316 scrimmage yards (105.3 per game) and a rushing touchdown in his past three at home. He ranks fifth among rookie running backs with 784 scrimmage yards (518 rushing and 266 receiving). Giovani Bernard had a rushing touchdown in Week 15. He has over 95 scrimmage yards in two of the past three games. He has a touchdown in two of the past three vs NFC.
- A.J. Green had six catches for 155 yards, including an 82-yard touchdown, in the last meeting with the Lions. He has 394 receiving yards (78.8 per game) with two touchdowns in the past five games vs the NFC. He is one of four players in NFL with over 950 receiving yards (980) and eight touchdown catches. Green can become the second player in team history (Chad Johnson) with six 1,000 receiving yard seasons. Brandon LaFell had nine catches for 98 yards in his last game vs Detroit. (11/23/14 with the Patriots). Tyler Kroft ties for third among AFC tight ends with five touchdown catches.
- Geno Atkins had two sacks in Week 15, his ninth career multi-sack game. He has nine sacks, second most among NFL defensive tackles. Since entering league in 2010, Atkins has 61 sacks, most among NFL defensive tackles. Vincent Rey had a team-high 11 tackles last week. Vontaze Burfict aims for his fifth in a row vs the NFC with over 10 tackles. Shawn Williams had an interception last week. He has an interception in two of the past three vs the NFC.
- Matthew Stafford ranks third in NFL with 3,920 passing yards and ties for fifth with 25 touchdowns. He has 2,492 passing yards (311.5 per game), 13 touchdowns and five interceptions for 107 passer rating in his past eight games. He has three consecutive games with over 25 passing attempts and 75 completion percentage, tied for the second longest streak in NFL history. He passed for 357 yards with three touchdowns without an interceptions for 96.6 passer rating in the last game against the Bengals.
- Theo Riddick has three rushing touchdowns in the past three games. He aims for his third in a row vs the AFC with a touchdown. Since 2015, Riddick leads NFL running backs in receptions (181) and ranks second in touchdown catches (10). Ameer Abdullah has three touchdowns (two rushing and one receiving) in past four on the road.
- Golden Tate has 33 receptions for 395 yards (79 per game) and two touchdowns in the past five on the road. In his past three vs the AFC, Tate has 252 receiving yards (84 per game) and a touchdown. Since 2013, he is one of five players in the NFL with over 400 catches (426) and 5,000 receiving yards (5,004). Marvin Jones Jr. spent four seasons with the Bengals (2012-15) and had 15 touchdown catches. He ties for fourth in the NFC with 8 receiving touchdowns. He has 433 receiving yards (86.6 per game) and three touchdowns in the past five games.
- Ezekiel Ansah has six sacks, forced fumble and a fumble recovery in the past eight on the road. Darius Slay leads the NFL with seven interceptions and ties for first with 20 passes defended. He has three interceptions, five passes defended and a fumble recovery in the past two. Quandre Diggs had a sack and interception last week. He aims for third in a row with an interception. Tahir Whitehead leads the team with 95 tackles. He has 17 tackles and a fumble recovery in the past two. Jarrad Davis leads NFL rookies with 79 tackles. He is the only rookie with over 70 tackles (79) and two sacks.