'Wetter the better' for Bengals on Saturday? Experts say so - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

'Wetter the better' for Bengals on Saturday? Experts say so

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CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -

The newest models have pushed the forecast for the Bengals' AFC Wild Card Game from wet to VERY wet. 

FOX19 NOW Chief Meteorologist Steve Horstmeyer says the chance of rain is up to over 90 percent as of the Thursday evening models, with the chance of the rain being heavy at times. 

Could Mother Nature do her part to help lift the Who Dey playoff curse?

ESPN Bengals' Insider Coley Harvey said Bengals fans should hope the rain comes down in bunches starting at 8:15 p.m. Saturday.  

"I think Bengals actually do have a good shot because of the weather in this game," Harvey said. "It's going to force both teams to run the football a little bit more."

Running the ball provides an immediate advantage for Cincinnati as the Steelers could possibly be down to their third-string running back. Le'Veon Bell is out for the remainder of the season after undergoing surgery to repair his right knee, which was injured in Week 8 against the Bengals. 

Pittsburgh's number two back DeAngelo Williams has also been sidelined through practices this week after suffering a foot injury Sunday against the Browns. Harvey told FOX19 NOW that Williams has told reporters that he could be doubtful by game time on Saturday. 

The Steelers rank 16th this season in total rushing yards (1,724). The Bengals rank 13th (1,805), but with a healthy stable of running backs in the fold. 

The rain could also slow down the Steeler passing attack led by Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown. The Steelers rank third in total passing yards with 4,603 despite Roethlisberger missing four games due to injury.

Brown ranks second in the league with 1,834 receiving yards with 10 TDs. 

Roethlisberger, even after missing those four games, still rank 14th in total passing yards. Big Ben has been susceptible to interceptions this year, including both games against the Bengals. Cincinnati has picked off Roethlisberger four times in two games this season.  

Harvey pointed out an overlooked advantage Cincinnati may have on Saturday. 

"You don't have the same footing concerns (in Paul Brown Stadium) that you might in others because of the artificial turf," Harvey said. "The Bengals are used to playing on this field through rain, snow, sleet and shine."

So maybe the rain would put a damper on tailgating, but after 25 years since the last playoff win, Bengals fans will be more than willing to give up pregame festivities to end the drought (pun intended).

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