Liz Loza and Matt Harmon examine the key pieces that contributed to Cincinnati's winning effort; namely Ja'Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, Nick Boyd, and Joe Burrow.
Hear the full conversation on the Yahoo Fantasy Football Forecast. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever you listen.
LIZ LOZA: Let's move to the Bengals and the Ravens. Matt kudos to you for starting Joe Burrow in our guru fantasy spoiler. Matt is going to win the guru challenge for FFL. I'm going to come in second place to Mr. Harmon. I stacked Stafford and Cooper Kupp just looking at the over unders thinking there'd be more scoring. I did roster Tee Higgins but would have loved to have a Higgins Burrow stack instead.
MATT HARMON: The good news is that there was really no wrong answer. If you wanted to play Ja'Marr Chase, Chase had a big game. If you wanted to play Tee Higgins, Tee Higgins had a monster game. 12 catches, 194 yards, and two touchdowns. And even Tyler Boyd got loose against this.
And I mean it's one thing to-- Look the Ravens secondary is a total nightmare. They get another injury in this game. They have all these absences. It's just horrible there for Baltimore. I mean it's like just call it a season. Enough already with the Ravens.
But for Burrow in this game I mean he came out slinging, throwing down the field. This was like it was one of those moments too where the Bengals have now swept the Ravens and they've swept the Steelers this year. Great. It's like the dawn of a new era type of thing in the AFC North. Or at least not like the Ravens are done. The Steelers obviously have questions. But the Ravens can be right back in the mix next year once they're healthier. But the Bengals I think have officially announced themselves as like we're kind of a force to be reckoned with in this AFC North because they have just such good young talent.
But the thing I kept thinking to watch this game is like Bengals be this all the time, OK? You're not going to put up 500 yards all the time. But just come out slinging the ball to Tee Higgins, and Ja'Marr Chase, and Tyler Boyd all the time. Because Higgins is so good. Chase we know is extremely talented. Like this team can come up and play with anybody. I mean they even a long vertical touchdown to Joe Mixon in this game. Everybody was involved.
LIZ LOZA: I was just going to say some of that requires being willing to use Mixon as a receiver. And he is an efficient pass catcher. He always has been an efficient pass catcher. I'm not saying like he's got lights out hands or anything.
But he generally converts positively. He carried the ball 18 times for 65 rushing yards and a score in this one. And then he again converted all six of his looks for 70 receiving. And you mentioned that like 52 yard reception that he brought in for another touchdown. And so I feel like there just has to be some variation. And maybe not be so fearful of using Mixon. Giving him a diverse number of touches that aren't just 30 on the ground.
MATT HARMON: I'm not ready to like write off Zac Taylor or anything, but there have been times even part early in this game when they get down in scoring position and they don't convert on third down and they kick a field goal. And it's like man, just keep riding with these guys in the passing game. They're getting it done. Just be aggressive Zac Taylor.
I think he's been a little too conservative at times. I'm not willing to just give up on Zac Taylor. Of course like this team's about to go to the playoffs most likely. This is good news for Bengals fans. The last thing you need to be worrying about right in this moment is, is Zac Taylor not a good coach?
And I'm not saying that he's not a good coach. But I can understand when they have been a little too conservative both in their fourth down decision making and just their overall pass rate at strangely at times this year. Because I think we've said on this podcast before Liz, like Burrow is playing awesome this year. I think he is capable of being-- And again he's not going to put up these numbers against most NFL secondaries that aren't completely decimated like Baltimore is. That's not what we're saying.
But they have the potential when they let these guys cook. Burrow, Chase, Higgins, and even Tyler Boyd to a degree downfield. And they can really put up points I think with anybody because these guys are that good. And there's all so young. These guys are all in their second or first years. It's going to be really fun to watch them kind of grow and develop together.