Every team that calls the AFC North division home won this past week. It has only exemplified the four clubs in the standings as one of the toughest groups in the NFL. There are some other tough divisions in football, but the AFC North has continuously proven that they have been able to stay competitive and create wins for the most part.
Some teams might seem to be pretenders, but they have found ways to stay in the playoff conversation this season. No matter the talk around specific teams, there is a three-way tie for second place in the division with some tie-breakers making the difference for now. Each week only causes this division to get more complex in the standings.
4th: The Bengals continue to show their bounce back after a slow start
The only reason Cincinnati is not in first place in the division right now is because of their slow start to the season. They have been able to overcome that slow start and become notified contenders again. They might be in last place in the AFC North currently, but they would actually make the playoffs if the season ended today. They have battled back.
Joe Burrow is totally back from his calf injury and that should put the entire NFL on notice. The offense of the Bengals looks to be perfectly fine and a quality machine going up and down the field on a routine basis. On top of that, their defense continues to be one of the better groups in the league. The Bengals are going to go on a run down the stretch.
Cincinnati will play host to the Houston Texans this upcoming Sunday as rookie sensation C.J. Stroud will come to town. He is coming off his best performance as a rookie, but he has struggled in his fair share of games this year. Houston still has a lot of needs across their roster, but Stroud can find ways to beat teams. Expect the Bengals to win, but Stroud will try to keep it close.