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5 keys to ringing in the New Year with a win in Kansas City

Out with the old...

Syndication: The Enquirer Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK

If you think the Cincinnati Bengals are going into Arrowhead expecting to lose, you’ve got another thing coming.

Here is what they need to do to win on New Year's Eve.

Bounce Back Browning

Jake Browning had a pretty impressive run in his first handful of starts, but that all came tumbling down last week. Can he overcome this adversity and get the Bengals back in the win column? Everything we have heard about him tells us that he has the same levelheadedness about him as the man he replaced. I think he will overcome and play well.

Overcome Arrowhead

Yes, they have won in Kansas City before, but that was with Joe Burrow. Can they win in that environment without him? Can Browning deal with the deafening crowd noise and frigid cold? Can this team pull off a win against Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid on their own turf without Burrow under center?

Contain Mr. Swift

While the Bengals have done a pretty good job against Travis Kelce in the past, they have struggled to contain tight ends throughout the 2023 season. I want to see Dax Hill step up and shut him down. Hill did an excellent job against tight ends in college, and I think he has what it takes to put Kelce on ice. Of course, the Chiefs have other tight ends and run a lot of 12 personnel. Hill can’t cover them all, so the linebackers will have to step up as well.

Explosive Plays

The Bengals defense has struggled to prevent big plays this season and that is kind of Patrick Mahomes’s jam. Containing Kelce is the biggest piece of the puzzle, but the Chiefs have plenty of speed at the skill positions. The Bengals must stay on top of them.

Contain Pass Rush

Mahomes is so dangerous because he extends plays with his feet. That is why it is so important that the Bengals stay disciplined in their pass rush. Trey Hendrickson, Sam Hubbard, and Myles Murphy can bring pressure from the edge, but they need to stay on the edge and not allow Mahomes to escape. That is where he does his damage.