‘Find a way to win’ -- Bengals look to game vs. Cardinals to change momentum of season

CINCINNATI — Cincinnati Bengals coach Zac Taylor said the players still have the right mindset after their third loss in four games, and the focus remains on getting back on track this week with a win.

The Bengals (1-3) travel to play the Arizona Cardinals (1-3) on Sunday with no plans to rest Joe Burrow. Taylor said Monday they believe they can still be more productive with him on the field, not 100 percent, than without him.

Cincinnati was 2-3 last year after Week 5, though the second win came sooner, so a victory Sunday would put the Bengals right in line with where they were in 2022 before making a run in the second half of the season.

With Arizona not having a great start either, the Bengals need to take advantage before the schedule gets tougher.

“I think our guys understand where we’re at, and what we have to do differently, and that really, our focus is just on Arizona, and playing our best game and find a way to win, and then we’ll be right back on track,” Taylor said. “... They believe in each other, and they believe in the process that we’re undergoing. So, I feel really good about where this team is at.”

The Cardinals won’t be getting the boost they were hoping to have at this point with quarterback Kyler Murray eligible to come off the Physically Unable to Perform list Monday. He is still considered to be weeks away from his return from his December ACL tear.

Josh Dobbs, who has 814 yards passing and four touchdowns, might not be the top choice quarterback but still has been more effective than Burrow so far, while completing 70.7 percent of his passes. Arizona’s offense ranks 18th in points scored (22.0 per game) and 12th in total yards (337.75 yards per game).

The Cardinals have scored on nine of 10 possessions in the redzone, including six touchdowns for a percentage that ranks 11th best in the league. Cincinnati will be looking to become the first defense to intercept Dobbs this season.

Marquise Brown has been Dobbs’ best target, catching 21 passes for 239 yards and two touchdowns, while Michael Wilson adds 237 yards and two touchdowns on 16 receptions. Tight end Zach Ertz has 136 yards on 20 catches and 30 targets – the latter two numbers ranking him second on the team.

James Conner leads the running game with 318 yards rushing and two touchdowns, while Dobbs adds 141 yards and a touchdown on 24 carries.

Defense has been the biggest struggle for the Cardinals. They rank 25th in points allowed (25.5 points per game) and 26th in yards allowed (374.5 yards per game), including surrendering 132.0 yards rushing per game and 242.5 passing yards per game. Arizona has allowed 12 touchdowns and five field goals on 20 redzone chances.

Dennis Gardeck has four sacks and five tackles for loss, and linebacker Kyzir White has an interception to go along with a team-high 37 tackles.

Arizona is coming off a 35-16 loss to the San Francisco 49ers, but the Cardinals stunned Dallas in Week 3 and account for the Cowboys’ only defeat.

The Bengals haven’t played Arizona since Taylor’s first season in 2019, but the Cardinals won that one 26-23 in Cincinnati and have won two straight in the series, as well as four of the last five. The overall series is tied at 6-6, but the home team historically has had the advantage. The Cardinals are 4-0 in games played in St. Louis and Arizona.

Seven of the past nine meetings have been one-score games.


Bengals at Cardinals, 4:05 p.m., Fox, 700, 1530, 102.7, 104.7

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