The Cincinnati Bengals made it clear in 2022 that they’ll use any perceived slight as motivation.
From the planned coin toss that could’ve determined home-field advantage in the Wild Card round of the playoffs to the tickets being sold for a potential AFC Championship game in Atlanta between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Buffalo Bills (I wonder if those refunds have been sent), the Bengals will use whatever they can as fuel.
Even head coach Zac Taylor will spend time scouring the internet for disparaging comments to use as motivation.
Zac Taylor says you are looking for any bit of motivation you can find as the season gets long, now 20 weeks in.
“I’ll search every inch of the Internet to get it.”
— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) January 23, 2023
On Wednesday, the Bengals received the best possible piece of motivation for 2023.
The Chiefs’ Super Bowl LVII celebration included a speech from Patrick Mahomes that should serve to motivate Joe Burrow and his teammates during the offseason.
— NFL (@NFL) February 15, 2023
“Before we started this season, the AFC West said we were rebuilding,” said Mahomes. “I’m going to be honest with you — I don’t know what rebuilding means. In our rebuilding year, we’re world champs.”
“This is just the beginning, we ain’t done yet,” added Mahomes.
Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce also had some comments that I’m sure Cincy players noticed.
“Let me take you back to 2022 in the month of maybe April, maybe,” said Kelce. “Guys were getting signed left and right. The haters were saying that the Chiefs would never make the playoffs, the haters were saying the Chiefs were done. If you knew the Chiefs were going to win the division, let me hear you say, hell yeah! If you knew the Chiefs were going to get the No. 1 seed, let me hear you say, hell yeah”
The Chiefs are where the Bengals want to be. And for Cincinnati to get there next season, they’ll have to knock off Kansas City.
Everyone in Cincy’s locker room should be playing Mahomes’ comments on a loop this offseason. That’s a reminder of what, and who, they’re chasing.
It’s not like the Bengals need the extra motivation to win. But as Joe Burrow said during the playoffs, if it’s there, why not use it?
Joe Burrow absolutely nails it when it comes to using outside noise as motivation pic.twitter.com/NGiYe72Rot
— zach ragan (@zachTNT) January 26, 2023