Avoiding the dreaded 0-2 start is paramount in the NFL. The numbers tell the story.
Since the 12-team playoffs began in 1990, 265 teams began a season 0-2. Only 30 of those teams advanced to the postseason (11.3%), showcasing how hard it is for 0-2 teams to make the playoffs. Even in an expanded field with 14 teams now making the postseason, none of the seven teams that started the season 0-2 made the playoffs last year.
For five teams in 2022, their season could be declared over. The Cincinnati Bengals, Las Vegas Raiders, Tennessee Titans, Carolina Panthers, and Atlanta Falcons all started the year 0-2 — three of those teams reached the playoffs last season.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, 63% of teams (165 of 262) that started 2-0 advanced to the postseason since 1990. Six teams have an inside track to the playoffs in 2022 after starting 2-0: The Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, Kansas City Chiefs, Philadelphia Eagles, New York Giants, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Four of those six teams qualified for the playoffs last year and plenty of legitimate chances at a Super Bowl title.
Which of the winless teams still have a chance? What undefeated teams are just fools gold?
Tale of the tape for the 0-2 teams
The Bengals have lost both their games by a game-winning field goal, rallying back from double digit second-half deficits in both losses. Fast starts would help Cincinnati avoid these heartbreaking scenarios, yet the Bengals continue to show they aren’t an easy out for any team.
A bigger concern for Cincinnati is an offensive line that has allowed 13 sacks in two games against two very good defenses that held the Bengals high-powered offense to 20 or fewer points in both contests. Joe Burrow is also guilty for holding the ball too long and the Bengals coaching staff needs to get the short passing game going and stop going for the jugular with chunk plays.
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Author : Jeff Kerr
Publish date : 2022-09-21 13:19:18
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