They don’t play very often, so it is tough to gather a ton of info from the past history between the New Orleans Saints and the Cincinnati Bengals.
In fact, the last time these two teams faced off – on Nov. 11, 2018 – current Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow was eight days removed from a 29-0 loss at Tiger Stadium to No. 1 Alabama, and it came one day after No. 7 LSU defeated Arkansas, 24-17, in Fayetteville. (And still 14 months away from a national championship.) Andy Dalton, meanwhile, was still the Bengals’ quarterback.
This game is notable, as well, as Dalton will lead the Saints and face his former team for the third time and second as a starter. His stats against Cincinnati are listed at the bottom of this post.
The Saints and Bengals haven’t met in the Caesars Superdome since 2014, and the all-time series is tied at 7.
Let’s dive further into the trends and series history and see just what we can dig out:
LINE TREND: The Saints were a 1-point underdog before the Week 5 games, in which New Orleans defeated Seattle, 39-32, and Cincinnati lost to Baltimore, 19-17. However, the line then opened the week as high as Bengals -2.5, dropped to -1 at some books, and is now -2.5 once again at Caesars Sportsbook (at Saints +100, Bengals -120).
WEATHER FORECAST: Beautiful outside and inside the Caesars Superdome.
SAINTS (2-3, 1-1 at home)
The Saints are ranked seventh in the NFL in overall offense (yards gained) and 12th in points scored. They are 10th in rushing offense and 13th in passing. The team is 16th in overall defense and 25th in points allowed. They are 24th against the run and 12th against the pass.
Although the Saints haven’t been great at home overall the past year or so, they still have been very good at home in the Dome in October, winning 17 of their past 18 games in the month there dating back the past 10 seasons.
With the win last week, the Saints have now won 19 of their previous 22 games in October, no matter where they have been played.
New Orleans has opened a season 2-3 on 13 previous occasions (most recently 2016), 10 times by victory in the fifth game. When winning that one to move from 1-3 to 2-3, they are 2-8 in the next one in team history.
How important is this one for the Saints? They have opened a season exactly 2-4 18 different times, and they have finished with a winning season just once (9-7 in 1989) and made the playoffs once (in 1990).
BENGALS (2-3, 1-2 on the road)
Cincinnati is ranked 22nd in the NFL in overall offense (yards gained) and 16th in points scored. They are 25th in rushing offense and 12th in passing. The Bengals are 13th in the NFL in overall defense and eighth in points allowed. They are seventh against the run and 18th against the pass.
The opposite of the Saints, Cincinnati is 3-10 in the month of October under Zac Taylor. However, all three of those victories have come on the road.
This is the 10th time in franchise history the Bengals have opened a season 2-3. The previous nine times it has occurred, the team has never won the next game.
SAINTS vs. BENGALS SERIES
All-time: The teams are tied at 7.
All-time in New Orleans: Bengals lead, 4-2 (All in the Superdome).
All-time in Cincinnati: Saints lead, 5-3.
Series trends and notes
New Orleans has won two of the past three (in 2018 and 2010), but Cincinnati won three games in a row prior to that (in 2006, 2002 and 1996).
This is the first time since 2014 the teams will meet in the Superdome and only the seventh time ever. It’s only the third time this century they will play each other in New Orleans.
The Saints haven’t defeated the Bengals in the Superdome since Jan. 2, 1994, as the teams wrapped up their regular seasons. Steve Walsh led New Orleans (8-8) in that one, going 15-for-27 for 193 yards and two touchdowns, while David Klingler was 13-of-23 for 117 yards for Cincinnati. No player in the game rushed for more than 48 yards, and the only Bengals touchdown came on a Michael Brim Pick Six from 23 yards out.
The most memorable game in the series came Dec. 5, 2010, as the Saints (9-3) trailed the Bengals (2-10) late in the fourth quarter despite leading by as much as 20-6 midway through the third.
Cedric Benson scored from 4 yards out, and Carson Palmer hit Jermaine Gresham for 2 points that tied the score at 27 with 8:08 left. Then, Clint Stitser kicked a 47-yard field goal with 4:25 remaining that gave Cincinnati a 30-27 lead.
However, Drew Brees marched the Saints 70 yards down the field in six plays, and hit Marques Colston on a 3-yard touchdown pass with 34 seconds left for a 34-30 victory.
QUARTERBACKS IN THE SERIES
JOE BURROW has never faced the Saints.
ANDY DALTON vs. Bengals
Sept. 19, 2021 (with Chicago in relief of Justin Fields): W, 20-17. 9-11, 56 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT.
Dec. 13, 2020 (with Dallas): W, 30-7. 27-36, 217 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT.
TOTALS: 2-0 record (1-0 as starter). 36-of-53 (.679 completion percentage), 273 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT.