The 3-6 Denver Broncos host the 3-6 Cincinnati Bengals at home Sunday, and while the Mile High advantage is barely giving the Broncos an edge over the Bengals in Vegas, it’s doing almost nothing in Broncos Country.
Just nine games in, fans are exhausted with this season, and for many it’s hard to see much light at the end of the tunnel.
Much of the MHR staff has “embraced the tank” - as reflected in the predictions below - and it’s hard to argue with the sentiment, even though the Bengals haven’t won a game in Denver since 1975, as Brandon Perna points out, to which he adds:
“This probably means the Bengals are guaranteed a win since we’re seeing all positive streaks come to an end.”
Perna, in fact, believes that since he keeps picking the Broncos to win, and they lose, if he picks them to lose this week, perhaps he’ll “reverse the curse” and they’ll win.
Bengals 24, Broncos 10
Broncos 27, Bengals 17
If the Broncos are going to win another game this season, they need to beat the Bengals this week. If they can't manage that, then wins over teams like the Jets and Colts are far from assured. The Bengals have a terrible offensive line after letting all their talent there walk last offseason, so the Broncos need to bring the heat and put Andy Dalton on his back as often as possible. And the run defense needs to lock down like it was doing earlier in the season. On offense, this might be Brock Osweiler's last audition for 2017. A loss would probably see Paxton Lynch take over next week. A win, though, would make the coaches' decision harder. - Taylor Kothe
Bengals 23, Broncos 17
The Broncos are masters at beating themselves. Should they win this game? Absolutely. Will they win this game? Probably not. - Tim Lynch
Bengals 24, Broncos 13
Losing to the Bengals gives the Broncos a top 5 pick. #EmbraceTheTank - Scotty Payne
“I get it. I feel the same way the fans feel… My only goal is to win football games, so I get the criticism and I don’t mind it.” - Coach Joseph pic.twitter.com/51Ez1VNuxD— Denver Broncos (@Broncos) November 16, 2017
Bengals 24, Broncos 20
While the Bengals might be the best antidote this team could have with the current streak they are on, it won’t happen. Have the Broncos done anything in the last five weeks to show they can produce enough points to win a game? No. The current incarnation of this team will find a way to lose. McManus will get his though, so it is nice to see he has turned his season around. The defense will also find some success, but the offensive struggles will be the mountain that can’t be climbed. - Adam Malnati
Bengals 27, Broncos 13
This has been a season of history for Denver … and not in a good way. The Broncos got shutout for the first time in 25 years, allowed 50 or more points for the first time in seven years and have now lost two-straight games at home to Tom Brady. In the history of the series between the Broncos and Bengals, Cincinnati has won just two games in Denver. The last time it happened was Nov. 9, 1975, when the Bengals won 17-16. If ever there was a season for history to be made, this is it. And after the game, rest assured we’ll hear how great the Broncos practiced. #EmbraceTheTank - Ian St. Clair
I’m a little superstitious about picking actual scores when it comes to predicting Broncos games, but I’m very superstitious about picking against this team. I will never do it, since I think the bad karma is a bad idea. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not ignorant to the problems on this team, nor am I convinced they can overcome them in one week, but I do always think it is possible for the Broncos to win, no matter how improbable. And no matter the legit reasons to “embrace the tank” and start planning for next year, the competitor in me just can’t do it. I can’t for one second justify wishing for a loss when there are guys out there doing whatever they can to win.
Von Miller not messing around. Walked into the locker room today, turned to Shane Ray and Shaq Barrett and ordered them to the weight room. "We got 11 sacks this season. Let's go."— Nicki Jhabvala (@NickiJhabvala) November 17, 2017
Where do you stand, Broncos Country?