The Cincinnati Bengals’ schedule for the 2021 season is hot off the press. Can’t football season just start now?
We still have rookie camp, minicamp, OTAs, training camp, and the preseason before we really get to see the Bengals in action.
While we have months to anticipate the new season, we have plenty of time to think about some of the most interesting upcoming games.
That leads us to asking, which games are you most excited to watch in 2021?
Here are a few games that stand out:
Season opener vs. Minnesota
There’s a lot going on in this game, so the Bengals get to open against one of the most interesting opponents on the schedule.
First and foremost, the Bengals get a rare Week 1 home game in 2021. The Bengals opened at home only once in the entire 2010s decade, so this is a treat for Bengals fans.
Secondly, there’s the Mike Zimmer reunion with the Bengals. The Bengals former defensive coordinator will coach his first game in Paul Brown Stadium since 2013, and only the second game against the Bengals since becoming the head coach of the Vikings.
Third, there’s the reunion of Joe Burrow, Ja’Marr Chase and Justin Jefferson. The crew combined for 194 completions, 3,320 passing yards, and 38 touchdowns in 2019 at LSU. Now, Burrow and Chase will hope to take down Jefferson’s Vikings.
Week 2 @ Chicago
There’s a good chance Andy Dalton starts for the Bears in this Week 2 game at Soldier Field.
Even though Dalton wasn’t the most talented quarterback to ever play for the Bengals, he did a lot for the franchise and for the city of Cincinnati, so it’s always great to see him play. We still hope he loses though.
And if Dalton doesn’t start that game, it means Bengals fans get to see Justin Fields, who will be an exciting quarterback to watch.
Week 3 @ Pittsburgh and/or Week 12 vs. Pittsburgh
The Bengals are looking to extend their winning streak against the Steelers.
Despite the strong start they had in 2020, they limped into the postseason where they got pummeled by the Browns. Then they had one of the least productive offseasons in the league. If there was ever an opportunity to sweep the Steelers, this year is it.
Week 4 vs. Jacksonville
Burrow vs. Lawrence II.
Three players from the 2019 National Championship Game were drafted in the first round this year. Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne from Clemson went to the Jaguars, while Chase went to the Bengals.
The Bengals have Burrow, Chase, and Tyler Shelvin from LSU’s championship-winning squad, while also adding Tee Higgins and Jackson Carman from Clemson. Nevertheless, Lawrence will look to get his revenge against Burrow.
For those Bengals fans who are also Buckeyes fans, this will be Urban Meyer’s first game back in Ohio since the 62-39 thrashing of Michigan in 2018.
Week 9 vs. Cleveland and/or Week 18 @ Cleveland
The Browns have been the Bengals’ little brother since they returned to Cleveland in 1999. More accurately, they have been every teams’ little brother, but they have finally turned a corner after more than 20 years.
The Browns are 5-1 against the Bengals in the last three years, and that simply cannot stand.
Like it or not, Baker Mayfield will be compared to Burrow for the next few years, given the fact that they will play twice a year for the foreseeable future. Burrow would like to get some wins against Mayfield under his belt.
Are you more excited for any games that we didn’t mention here? Let us know which ones and why in the comments!