Super Wild Card Weekend Preview: A Rematch in Cincinnati

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The Las Vegas Raiders are headed to Ohio to take on the Cincinnati Bengals for Super Wild Card Weekend. This marks the Raiders’ first playoff appearance since 2016 and QB Derek Carr’s first playoff game of his career.

After a regular season no one could’ve imagined, here are a couple of things to know before Saturday’s playoff matchup.

Week 11 Revisit

The Bengals and Raiders have already met once before this season. Week 11 brought Cincinnati to the desert and a loss for Las Vegas. The game ended in a 32-13 Bengals win. However, the game was closer than the final score suggests. 

The Raiders’ defense was the star of the game. QB Joe Burrow was consistently under pressure from the Raiders’ defensive line. Superstar rookie WR Ja’Marr Chase was held to three receptions for 32 yards, a far cry from his season high of 266 yards. The defense came to play, but the offense couldn’t keep up. DE Maxx Crosby and his defensive teammates were on the field for well over half the game. 

As one would expect, the defense got tired. That’s when the game got too far out of reach for the Raiders. The Bengals scored 19 points in the fourth quarter and dropped the Raiders to 5-5. 

Now, the Raiders are back with a vengeance and are ready to take the Bengals down in their home stadium, as they did to them in November. 

What’s On the Line

The last time the Raiders and Bengals met in the playoffs, it marked the end of legendary RB Bo Jackson’s career. A tackle from behind led to a devastating hip injury that was too severe to come back from. The Raiders went on to win the game, but the rivalry has roared on since then. A win this weekend would be another chance to show the Bengals that the rivalry won’t end anytime soon.

Victory for the Raiders would be significant in many ways. Not only would it keep their season alive, but they would be able to show the league that they earned their spot.

If Las Vegas wins, they have the potential to take on many different powerhouse teams in the divisional round, including AFC West rivals the Kansas City Chiefs or the #1 seed Tennessee Titans.

If the Silver and Black are unable to come out victorious in Cincinnati, it will mark the end of the 2021 season. 

Any given Sunday, they say, or Saturday in this case.

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