Bengals last won a playoff match: History of the post-season drought in Cincinnati, ‘Curse of Bo Jackson’

It’s been a long time since the city of Cincinnati has seen its two biggest sports teams advance by a round in the playoffs.

The Reds reached baseball after the 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2020 seasons, with each season ending quickly. The Bengals made it to the playoffs in 2005, 2009 and 2011-2015 and were eliminated in the wild card round each time. The only team to advance in the playoffs in the city is FC Cincinnati when he was in the USL. Since the transition to MLS, it has not yet reached the playoffs.

Cincinnati fans are accustomed to play-off disappointments, from injuries to Carson Palmer in 2005 to non-striker Roy Halladay in 2010, when they lost three at home to the Giants in 2012 and won the Ben Roethlisberger vs. Bengals match in 2016 – with two big matches. penalties at the end – to return from a seemingly impossible deficit and win 18-16.

The Bengals are back in the playoffs after winning the AFC North for the first time since 2015. Not only will they host the match, but they will do so as favorites against the Raiders, with FanDuel Sportsbook placing the Bengals 4.5 points. favourite. Could it be the year Cincinnati moves on?

Sporting News looks back on the post-season drought that the Bengals have endured, what the world was like when they last won the playoffs, and where their loss in NFL history belongs.

Bengals playoff history

When was the last Bengals to win the playoffs?

In 1990, the Bengals completed the basic section with a 9-7 record, leveling the Houston Oilers and Steelers for the best balance at AFC Central, but gaining a lead in the tiebreak. The division was the only one in the league without a team that had double-digit wins.

The Bengals clashed with the Oilers on January 6, 1991, defeating the division’s enemies 41:14 and advancing to the AFC divisional round. In this game, quarterback Boomer Esiason, now an analyst at CBS Sports, completed 14 of 20 passes for 150 yards with two touchdowns. He also threw himself five times for 57 yards and another score. Cincinnati took the lead at 20-0 and never slowed down in the game.

The Reds had won the World Series the previous year, the last time the city had won the championship. The Reds have won the NLDS since 1991 in 1995, when the Cincinnati MLB team advanced to the playoff round.

“The Curse of Bo Jackson”

Cincinnati won only the first game against the Oilers before facing the Los Angeles Raiders in the AFC divisional round. Los Angeles won the game 20-10 after two passes from quarterback Jay Schroeder.

But this game does not remember the result, but rather what happened during the game. Star running back and two-sport athlete Bo Jackson passed the hand during the third quarter of the match and ran along the side line. He seemed to be heading for the end zone before defender Kevin Walker could deal with him from behind and keep the score close.

At the time, the equipment did not appear to be significant or particularly harmful, but it turned out that he dislocated and broke his hip. According to an article in The Los Angeles Times, the doctor said at the time that Jackson had avascular necrosis, which meant that blood was cut from the damaged bone. Jackson has never played in the NFL and played in only a few more MLB games for the rest of his career, spending part two seasons with the White Sox and one with the Angels, but never having his basic skills or strength stolen. he had before the injury.

The injury to Jackson, an icon in the sports world, led to the belief that Cincinnati had been hit by the “Bo Jackson Curse” caused by the end of his career. The Bengals went from the team that reached the Super Bowl in 1988 to the worst team in the NFL between 1991 and 2002. It wasn’t until Marvin Lewis arrived as team head coach that Cincinnati was able to return to the playoffs, but still made quick departures each year. the post-seasons leave the city feeling as if a curse persists over them.

The state of the world in 1991

As has been emphasized, today’s world is completely different from the world when Cincinnati celebrated its playoff victory.

For starters, there are now text messages of things.

But a lot has changed. According to the Office for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, the gas cost about $ 1.14 per gallon. Three days after the game, the Gulf War began with the launch of the American air campaign. According to Gallup, the popularity of President George HW Bush was more than 64 percent and eventually rose to almost 90 percent that year, the highest level of approval by the president to date. A year later, he would lose his candidacy for re-election.

In the world of technology, Microsoft first introduced its office suite in 1990. The most popular phone was the Motorola MicroTac Classic, according to My Broadband. The world was only a year away from PenLite, Apple’s first attempt to create a tablet.

The Silence of the Lambs won an Oscar for Best Picture. According to The TV Ratings Guide, “Cheers” was No. 1 television program for the 1990-91 season. “(Everything I Do) I Do It for You” by Bryan Adams topped the 1991 Billboard Hot 100 singles chart.

The NFL had only three divisions in each conference and only 28 teams. Houston was still the Oilers, the Raiders were in Los Angeles, the Chargers were in San Diego and the Cardinals were in Phoenix. At that time, the Patriots never won the Super Bowl. Since then, the Steelers have tied for the most wins in league history.

Tom Brady would finish high school when the Bengals won, and when Cincinnati boarded the field, he would be preparing for high school. The only active Bengalis who were alive were Michael Thomas (less than a year), Kevin Huber (5 years old) and Chris Harris (one year and a half). Joe Burrow was born almost six years later.

The longest NFL playoff win

Cincinnati’s 30th playoff victory is tied to the longest active series of any NFL team. The Lions are the second team in 30 years. Detroit last won the match when he reached the NFC Conference Championship in 1992 after the end of the 1991 season and lost to Washington. If Cincinnati loses on Saturday, it will once again beat Detroit by the longest drought.

Every other team in the NFL has won at least one playoff game in 2000.

There are only three teams that have ever experienced a longer period of time than the Bengals without winning a playoff match.

The cardinals hold the longest series and it’s not particularly tight. Arizona reached the playoffs in 1998 and made it to the divisional round. Before that, however, the Cardinals last won a playoff match in 1947, when the Chicago Cardinals defeated the Eagles and won the NFL Championship. That’s 51 years ago we haven’t won a single match in the off-season. During this period, the Cardinals changed from the Chicago Cardinals to St. Louis Cardinals via Phoenix Cardinals to Arizona Cardinals.

The Lions won the NFL Championship in 1957 and did not win another playoff game until the 1991 season, which ended with the NFC Championship Championship playing in a 34-year drought. During this span, they made it to the postseason only three times.

The only other longer series of defeats in NFL history belongs to the Saints. New Orleans first came into existence as a franchise in 1967 and did not win a playoff match until 2000, when it finally defeated the Rams in a wild card round. It lost to the Vikings in the divisional round.


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