NFL prediction: Cincinnati Bengals (7-4) vs. Kansas City Chiefs (9-2), 4:25 p.m., Sunday, CBS
The Bengals have surged out the of bye, answering some key questions in back-to-back road wins over Pittsburgh and Tennessee.
Good team? Check.
Playoff contender? Check.
Elite team? We’ll find out Sunday.
The Bengals changed their outlook with the hard-earned, four-point win against the AFC South-leading Titans. No longer is their identity in question after defeating one of the most physical teams in the NFL.
The timing couldn’t be better for the Bengals to be playing their best ball with the AFC’s best team coming to Paycor Stadium.
The Bengals’ recent play has set-up Sunday’s game as a potential preview to the AFC championship game. It’s a rematch of last year’s game.
There will be no shortage of motivation in either locker room. The Chiefs want revenge for losing twice to Cincinnati last season. The Bengals have reason to feel disrespected by the pundits, who consistently talk about the Chiefs being the team to beat in the AFC.
Let’s not get bogged down in the stats. Both teams are going to move the ball. It’s going to come down to which offense is better in the red zone ∸ and both teams are really good there. Bonus: The Bengals are expected to get receiver Ja’Marr Chase back from injury. He torched the Chiefs for 320 yards and 4 touchdowns in the two games last season.
Vegas has Kansas City as a two-point favorite. The Chiefs have lost one game on the road. Home-field advantage could be the difference-maker in a matchup of hot teams.
Prediction: Bengals win, 28-27
Last week: Cincinnati defeated Tennessee, 20-16. I predicted the Bengals would lose, 23-20.
My season record: 8-3
This article originally appeared on Cincinnati Enquirer: NFL prediction: Cincinnati Bengals vs Kansas City Chiefs