2023 NFL season: Four things to watch for in Bengals-Jaguars on Monday night

A few weeks ago, the main attraction of Monday night’s game was the anticipated faceoff between two of the AFC’s best and brightest young stars in Joe Burrow and Trevor Lawrence.

But even though the circumstances have changed since then with Burrow’s season-ending wrist injury, there’s still intrigue and high stakes for both sides when the Cincinnati Bengals (5-6) and Jacksonville Jaguars (8-3) meet up on Monday night in a game that could have wide-ranging implications for a tight AFC playoff race.

On the one side are the Jaguars, who have won seven of their last eight and sit atop the AFC South after defeating the division rival Texans last week. Though the Jags entered Week 13 with a two-game lead in the standings, along with the No. 3 overall seed in the AFC playoff picture, Jacksonville can’t let up on the gas for fear of the Texans or Colts, who both won on Sunday, gaining ground in the division.

On the other sideline will be the Bengals, whose playoff hopes took a serious hit when Burrow was lost and are coming off of a third-straight loss to the Steelers. But despite sitting in last place in the tough AFC North, they still have an outside chance of sneaking into the postseason due to the logjam of teams on the bubble. With Jake Browning leading the team the rest of the way, Cincinnati will have a tall task ahead over the final six weeks in order to stay in contention, starting with Monday’s matchup with the Jaguars.

Which of these teams will be able to advance their playoff efforts in a prime-time matchup in Jacksonville, and what are the key storylines to follow?

Here are four things to watch for when the Bengals visit the Jaguars on Monday night:

  • WHERE: EverBank Stadium (Jacksonville, Fla.)
  • WHEN: 8:15 p.m. ET | ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, NFL+

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