The Bengals were 9-8 on the season, ending in last place in the division. They were just 1-5 in the division, with the last win coming in Week 18, and had an impressive stretch of non-conference games, going 5-0 vs. the NFC.
Oh, and by winning their finale, the Bengals helped the AFC North become the first division to have four teams above .500 for the first time in 88 years, according to CBS Sports.
Here’s how the rest of the division closed out the season.
The AFC North becomes the first division since 1935 to have all teams finish above .500 pic.twitter.com/I3UNTQBENy— NFL on CBS (@NFLonCBS) January 7, 2024
The last time every team in a division finished with a winning record was 1935.— Cam Miller (@cammillerfilms) January 7, 2024
The NFL West.
Det. Lions 7-3-2
GB Packers 8-4
Chi. Bears 6-4-2
Chi. Cards 6-4-2
The #Bengals help make history today.
Congrats AFC North. pic.twitter.com/MvtUq2Ul3U
Cincinnati also sported wins over the Jacksonville Jaguars, Seattle Seahawks, Indianapolis Colts, and Minnesota Vikings, all of whom had a chance to clinch a playoff spot in the final week of regular-season play.
At the top of the AFC North, the Ravens had one of the most impressive seasons in the NFL and will be a major threat to win the Super Bowl.
As for the Browns, they had quarterback troubles later in the season but won big games down the stretch with 38-year-old Joe Flacco.
The Steelers won the bulk of their games behind an ultra-solid defense as their offense consistently struggled to put points on the board.
Cincinnati, which saw Joe Burrow go down against the Ravens on Thursday Night Football, showed promise after a 1-3 start but began to falter without their star. They did bounce back and win three straight games behind quarterback Jake Browning, but his luck eventually started to fade.
The Bengals will be the only team in the division not in the playoffs, but they did help them do something that no division has done since 1935. That’s impressive, and it goes to show just how great the AFC North is, and that was without having a healthy Joe Burrow for most of the season.