It's the most wonderful time of the year, and not only because the holiday season has arrived.
December means every NFL game becomes a lot more important as the playoff races and the draft order become clearer week by week.
The next chapter of the Bengals-Patriots series takes place on Sunday at Paul Brown Stadium. It is a matchup between a team at the end of their championship window and one that is laying the foundation to build one for the future.
The Patriots lead the series 16-9, but the Bengals lead in games played in Cincinnati, 7-6. It's one of the many numerical nuances heading into Week 15.
- 6-1 – Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's career record against the Bengals.
- 1-2 – Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton's career record versus the Patriots.
- 62 – December wins by Brady, most by a quarterback in NFL history.
- 18 – December wins by Dalton.
- 243 – Passing yards needed by Dalton to become just the eighth player in league history with 3,000 or more passing yards in eight of his first nine seasons.
- 222.3 – Dalton's passing yards per game against the Patriots defense.
- 264.8 – Yards per game allowed by the Patriots defense, No. 1 in the NFL.
- 12.9 – Points allowed per game by the Patriots defense, No. 1 in the NFL.
- 15.2 – Points per game by the Bengals offense, ranked No. 31 in the NFL.
- 5 – Number of games the Patriots defense has allowed a 100-yard rusher.
- 93.8 – Joe Mixon's rushing yards per game after the bye week.
- 40.0 – Mixon's rushing yards per game before the Week 9 bye.
- 44.1 – Red zone touchdown percentage by the Bengals defense, ranked No. 3 in the NFL.
- 4-4 – Bengals' record against the Patriots in December games.
- 167 – Yards wide receiver Tyler Boyd is shy of 1,000, trying to become the sixth Bengal to hit the mark in multiple seasons.
- 29 – Consecutive games safety Jessie Bates III has played 91 percent or more of defensive snaps.
- 9 – Current streak of consecutive 11-win seasons by the Patriots, tops in NFL history.
- 20 – 11-win seasons by New England since the 1970 merger.
- 26 – Patriots draft picks on their 2019 roster.
- 31 – Bengals draft picks on their 2019 roster.