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3 Biggest Takeaways From Week 5: AFC North

It was an interesting week in the AFC North as every team in the division that played got a win.  The Cincinnati Bengals got an upset victory against the New England Patriots.  The Cleveland Brown still share a piece of the No. 1 division spot (all three teams that played this week are now 3-2).  Lastly, the Baltimore Ravens looked like their old selves against the Miami Dolphins.   Here are the three biggest takeaways from this trio of games.

The Bengals Could Be Contenders But Let’s Not Get Too Excited Just Yet

NFL: New England Patriots at Cincinnati Bengals

Given the current state of the AFC North, the Bengals could very well end up in the playoffs this year.  Their upset win over the undefeated New England Patriots have a lot of people talking.  However, the Bengals beat a pretty poor New England Patriots team, by Tom Brady/Bill Belichick standards.  With the exception of a blowout against Tampa Bay, the Pats had only won by a combined 13 points.  That is not the Pats offense that has consistently put them as Super Bowl favorites in the odds.

The Bengals beat a shell of a team that used to be the best offense in the NFL, so we cannot get overexcited about the Bengals just because of this win.  The Bengals run game with Giovani Bernard and their defense looked great.  However, Andy Dalton and his O-line need to improve before we start talking about Cincinnati as Bowl-contenders.

Will The Ravens Be Plagued By Inconsistency All Year?


We made this point a few weeks ago, and we are going to reiterate it because Baltimore has yet to prove us wrong.  The biggest takeaway from Baltimore’s win over Miami is the question posed above.

One week the Ravens look like the team that won the Super Bowl last year and then the next week they lose to the Buffalo Bills.  They bounced back this week with a win over the Dolphins, but every time they take the field one has to wonder which Baltimore Ravens team showed up today.  It is still early in the season and they may eventually find their groove but at the moment they need to consistently play well before we talk about them being back in the Super Bowl, or even the playoff, picture.

The Cleveland Browns Refuse to Go Away


Once the butt of many jokes in the NFL, the Browns keep showing just why they are hanging with The Ravens and Bengals in the standings.

After getting off to an 0-2 start we prematurely declared the Browns as the same terrible team they were last year, but they have since won three games in a row and given the defending Super Bowl Champions a run for their money.  The Browns have notable victories over the Bengals and the Bills (a team that has beaten the Ravens).  We are hesitant to call the Browns contenders, but if they keep notching wins they are going to demand our attention.

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