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ESPN analyst ranks Jets over Bengals


Syndication: The Enquirer Albert Cesare/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Cincinnati Bengals will start the 2023 season in the same position as all other teams in the AFC: Chasing the Kansas City Chiefs.

After back-to-back AFC North Championships and splitting the last two AFC Championships with Kansas City, it should be clear that the Bengals are the team Kansas City should be the most concerned with until further notice. Or not, according to ESPN’s Dan Orlovsky.

Orlovsky is one of the more popular analysts ESPN has on their roster and has been a big supporter of Joe Burrow since he got to the NFL, but he seems to think the New York Jets and new quarterback Aaron Rodgers are now the team that can dethrone the Chiefs.

Not only does he have the Jets ahead of the Bengals, but the Buffalo Bills as well.

Looking at Buffalo, it is hard to argue they improved any more than the Bengals have this off-season. Before the situation with Damar Hamlin unfolded, the Bengals appeared ready to go toe to toe with Josh Allen and co. When the two teams met in the divisional round, the Bengals left no doubt about who was the better team.

The Jets do boast a talented defense, an offense with formidable weapons, and a quarterback who won back-to-back MVPs in 2020 and 2021, but to slot them ahead of the Bengals before Rodgers even takes a snap is borderline laughable.

We’ve seen many times when a star signal caller moves to a new team, and it takes a season to really get things going. Or, they never seem to get going at all, like Brett Favre when he did a single year for the Jets after a public exit from the Green Bay Packers. Sound familiar?

The Bengals won’t see the Jets this regular season, but if Orlovsky is right, they just may meet in the playoffs, assuming both teams make it.

Despite back-to-back deep playoff runs, knocking off the Chiefs once, and being three points away from doing it again, it sure seems like the Bengals can still find motivation by turning on their televisions.

The season can’t get here soon enough.