I am a Cincinnati girl through and through. My first meal was Skyline Chili, my first words were “Who Dey” and my favorite animal was a Bengal Tiger. Okay… maybe that is a stretch. But I am a Cincinnati girl who has huge love for her city. My entire life, the Cincinnati Bengals have been a little bit of a joking matter. We won a few games here and there, but come January it was time for Bengals Fans to hang up our stripes and hope for better luck next year.
Then came the 2020 draft night. With the first overall draft pick, the Bengals selected 2019 Heisman winner Joe Burrow, to be our new quarterback. With the addition of Burrow, the future of the Bengals was finally looking bright. However, not for long. In week 11 of the 2020 NFL season, Burrow tore his ACL, leaving him out for the remainder of the season.
This season (fall of 2021), Burrow made his return. Once again, Bengals fans were hopeful. Compared to the Bengals of NFL’s past, this team was something special. To our surprise, January came, and we were still able and happy to won our stripes. We made it to the playoffs!
This in itself was worthy of celebrating, the Bengals last playoff win was 30 years ago. On January 15th, we donned our stripes and hopefully watched our tigers in their playoff game. Turning the city of Cincinnati upside down, the Bengals came out on top. The Queen City was celebrating like it was 1991! We were moving on. Our handsome, young quarterback tells the city that the team was “taking care of business”, and ready for the next round. It was a breath of fresh air for Cincinnatians everywhere.
Two more playoff games have come and gone, and our Bengals are on their way to the SuperBowl. The final game that would determine our fate came down to overtime. One final field goal kick. In those few moments, Bengals fans nationwide sent last minute prayers, held their loved ones close, and believed in our team. Rookie kicker Evan McPherson clinched the win and the Bengals first superbowl appearance since the 80’s.
Myself, along with many Bengals fans I’m sure, couldn’t stop the tears from flowing when the kick sailed through the goal posts. We did it. For the first time in my life, my hometown team who I supported through it all were going to play on the biggest stage in football. To Joe Burrow (Joey Franchise, Joey Superbowl, Joe Brrrr), Evan McPherson (Money Mac, Shooter), Ja’Marr Chase and the rest of our Bengals squad, YOU DID IT. Cincinnati thanks you. Make February 13th ours. Who dey!