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A brief look at Vikings/Bengals history

Let’s get back to doing these, shall we?

Minnesota Vikings v Cincinnati Bengals Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images

I’ve gotten away from doing these recently, as there were just too many real-world things to do to get them knocked out. However, with most of those things being out of the way, it’s time to bring it back. Each week, we’ll take a brief look at the history between the Minnesota Vikings and whichever team they happen to be playing that week. This week, the Vikings travel to take on the Cincinnati Bengals, the team that helped to bring us current Vikings’ head coach Mike Zimmer.

These teams have met just 13 times over the years, and things have been pretty evenly split with things largely favoring the home teams in these matchups. Let’s take a look back at some of the clashes these two squads have had.

As always, the numbers for these posts are brought to you by the folks from Pro Football Reference.

  • Games between the Vikings and Bengals: 13
  • All-time record: Vikings, 7-6
  • Vikings road record at Cincinnati: 1-6 (ouch)
  • Total Vikings’ points scored, head-to-head: 287 (22.1 points/game)
  • Total Bengals’ points scored, head-to-head: 243 (18.7 points/game)
  • Longest Vikings’ winning streak vs Bengals: 2 (25 December 1989, 27 September 1992)
  • Longest Bengals’ winning streak vs Vikings: 1 (six different times)
  • Most recent Vikings’ road win in series: 27 September 1992 (final score 42-7)
  • Most recent Bengals’ home win in series: 22 December 2013 (final score 42-14)
  • Biggest Vikings’ road win in series:35 points, 27 September 1992 (final score 42-7)
  • Biggest Bengals’ home win in series: 29 points, 18 September 2005 (final score 37-8)
  • Current streak: Vikings, 1 win

As you can see, the Vikings have not had a heck of a lot of success traveling to the home of WKRP over the years, as they’ve been victorious just once in seven attempts. I mean, they’re 6-0 at home against the Bengals, but that doesn’t do much good with the game not being in Minneapolis.

The last two matchups between these two teams have both resulted in blowouts for the home side. These two teams last met at U.S. Bank Stadium in 2017, and the Vikings brought the thunder in a big way. The purple raced out to a 17-0 first quarter lead after a touchdown run by Latavius Murray and a pick-six from Eric Kendricks. It looked like the Vikings might throw a shutout, as they held the Bengals scoreless for most of the afternoon, but an interception set up a short field and the Bengals got a 2-yard touchdown run from Giovani Bernard to avoid the shutout. The Vikings ultimately won the game 34-7 and clinched the 2017 NFC North title.

The Vikings’ last trip to Cincinnati. . .well, it was bad. The two teams exchanged touchdowns early to put the game at a 7-7 tie five minutes into the contest. Unfortunately, the Bengals then ran off the next 35 points, which included four touchdown passes from Andy Dalton to three different Bengals’ receivers (including two to A.J. Green). There was a pick-six for Vincent Rey mixed in there as well. The Vikings got a long touchdown run from Cordarrelle Patterson late, but it wasn’t enough to put lipstick on the pig that was a 42-14 loss.

Minnesota’s lone road win in Cincinnati came back in 1992, as Dennis Green led his charges into Riverfront Stadium to take on David Shula’s club. Both teams had records of 2-1 heading into the contest, so on paper it looked like it should have been close. However, the Vikings were the ones that scored 35 unanswered points in this one. The Vikings got three touchdowns from Terry Allen (two on the ground and one through the air), and Cris Carter reeled in a pair of touchdown passes from Rich Gannon to stake themselves to a 35-0 lead after three quarters. The Bengals finally got on the board in the fourth quarter, but Gannon answered that with his fourth touchdown pass of the day, a 32-yarder to Hassan Jones, to cap the Vikings’ 42-7 win.

That’s a brief look back at the history between the Vikings and the Bengals, folks. Hopefully the Vikings can get the monkey that apparently jumps on them every time they board a flight to Cincy off of their backs and get a Week 1 victory.