The first quarter of the 2023 season has been very rough for the Cincinnati Bengals.
From an unrecognizably poor offense to a defense that has given up over 175 rushing yards in three of four games, things just aren’t going well.
The Bengals entered the season as a Super Bowl contender in the eyes of... just about everyone and now look like a team that would need a miracle to make the playoffs.
In fact, our latest SB Nation Reacts poll shows that just 32% of Bengals fans polled believe the team can rebound and make the postseason.
If you would have said in August that through four games, 68% of the fans would not expect the postseason, most would have called you crazy.
Now, unfortunately, that is reality.
In a tough season, you can, at times, find silver linings to make you believe the team is at least headed in the right direction. After four underwhelming offensive performances, the silver lining seems hard to find.
When polled, only 23% of fans thought the team was headed in the right direction.
Blame is being assigned to head coach Zac Taylor, quarterback Joe Burrow, and the offensive line, for the most part. A hobbled Burrow looks like a shell of himself, fans and media members are questioning Taylor’s game plan, and for a third straight season, the offensive line is struggling.
That is a tough combination for an offense that boasts arguably the most talent in the entire NFL.
Not only are the fans disappointed, but many believe they are the most disappointing team in the entire NFL. This poll includes fans from all around the league, and an overwhelming 61% of fans would call the Bengals the most disappointing team in the entire league.
A 1-3 start, sluggish offense, and a defense that can’t bail the team out won’t lead to much confidence from anyone.
After starting 0-2 last season, many thought the Bengals wouldn’t make the playoffs. They responded by winning 10 straight games to end the season, on the way to their second-straight AFC Championship Game.
Can they beat even longer odds (+200 via DraftKings Sportsbook) and get back to postseason play?
Check out DraftKings Sportsbook, the official sportsbook partner of SB Nation.